American- Yemeni military talks partners for the long run
Yemen-USA, Politics, 12/24/2002
Washington stressed yesterday the long- run partnership linking it to Yemen, one of its " strong" partners in the World War it leads against what is called "terrorism."
The US commander of the African forces in the African Horn, Gen. John Sattler, said in conclusion of a three- day visit to Yemen, that his country does not intend to carry out "single" military operations in Yemen against those who are suspected to belong to al-Qaida organization, rather "we want to work in collaboration with Yemen." However, the CIA had carried out an attack by a pilotless plane against a car which was carrying a leading figure in al-Qaida organization named Ali al- Harithi to the East of Yemen at the beginning of November. Al-Harithi was killed in the attack together with five of his colleagues, including an American of Arab origin named Kamal Darwish.
Sattler, whose forces mission cover Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen said "any sort of operations that might be carried out in Yemen will be always in collaboration with the Yemeni government and the Yemeni army." But he added "we do not have plans for operations at the meantime." Sattler leads his operations, which concentrate on chasing persons suspected to belong to al-Qaida organization in the African horn, from the deck of the plane carrier USS Mount Whitney, now stationed at the Gulf of Aden, off the coasts of Djibouti, where 900 American soldiers are stationed.
The American official said he had asked the Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to mandate two army officers from the Yemeni army to work as two liaison officers on the deck of Mount Whitney.
Satler stressed that the American side vowed to help the Yemeni side to protect the key oil sites in Yemen which might be exposed to attacks by members of al-Qaida organization inside Yemen or others might infiltrate to it.
Sattler stressed that "the Yemenis are strong partners in the world war against terrorism, and that both the USA and the Yemeni President are concerned over the impact on terrorism against the Yemeni economy."
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