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Juan Herrero January 23, 2013

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Yemen.

Huthi wedding in Old Sanaa Yemen, 2012

Juan Herrero (b. 1984, Spain) received his BA in International Economics and Development from Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 2010. After a two month course in documentary photography at the CEV School of Image in Madrid he started working on development projects in Cuba and Indonesia, while also contributing to the Cordon Press agency. In the summer of 2012 he relocated to Sanaa, Yemen. He covered the ongoing hunger crisis in the west and Yemeni daily life after the Arab Spring which nearly became a civil war. His work has been published in Paris Match and Der Spiegel, among others.

About the Photograph:

“In the days after the US embassy riots in Sanaa, Yemen, which arose in reaction to the American-made Islamic video that swept the Muslim world in September 2012, a friend invited me to a Huthi wedding in Old Sanaa. The Huthis are a Zaidi Shi’ite insurgent group based in northern Saada, where they have fought six wars with the government since 2006. They are considered a violent opposition to  western policies. I was a bit unsure how my presence was going to be received, as anti-western sentiment had become more than noticeable in Sanaa since the embassy attack. I received several threats to my face walking around the streets during those few days. As always, at Yemeni weddings there are lots of guns and khat (leafy plant chewed as a drug). In the end, it all turned into a warm welcome. Everyone was happy, and so was I.”