Yemen's culture minister, who was recently honored for her work combating extremism and discrimination against women, says she is giving her award to Yemen's dwindling Jewish population.
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Arwa Othman won Human Rights Watch's Alison Des Forges Award in September. At a Thursday celebration in Sanaa, Othman called for "tolerance" and dedicated her award to "brothers and friends from the Jewish community."
Othman has been subjected to a smear campaign by hard-line Salafi groups because of her civil rights work and support for the Jewish community.
According to the Jewish Agency, fewer than 90 Jews live in Yemen — half of them in a guarded compound which protects the U.S. Embassy in the capital of Sanaa. They are often subject to attacks by both Sunni and Shi'ite Muslim militants.