Assorted Nationalities of Al Qaeda in Yemen, Govt Rejects Cease Fire Offer in Sa’ada War
Al-Qaeda continues to thrive in Yemen
“There isn’t a serious fight against Al-Qaeda in Yemen,” one analyst observes, but there is more to the story than economics. There has been a pattern of inaction andÂ bumbling on the part of the Yemeni government concerning jihadists within the country, so much so that one officialÂ remarked: “Yemen is like a bus station â€” we stop some terrorists, and we send others on to fight elsewhere … We appease our partners in the West, but we are not really helping.”
“Al-Qaeda launchpad in Yemen gives Saudis new headache,” by Ali Khalil forÂ Agence France-Press
Regarding theÂ failed attempt to assassinate Saudi Counter-Terror Chief, Prince Naif,Â the bomber hid the explosive device in his butt, but things worked out well in the end. The bomber was a Saudi national who traveled from Marib, Yemen to Saudi Arabia under the guise of surrendering, and no one was killed but the bomber.
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Yemen today arrested threeÂ random possible al Qaeda in Marib. The governor of Marib, Naji Al-Zayedi, said there had been a significant number of leading members of Al-Qaeda in Marib, headed by Yemeni Nasser Al-Wahishi and large numbers of followers, among them Yemenis, Saudis, Libyans, Moroccans, Egyptians and Algerians, the Saudi Gazette reported. (If Marib is an ungoverned region, what does the governor do all day?) “The tightening of security, however, has forced them to flee to other areas,” Al-Zayedi said.
While Yemen faces many challenges in countering al Qaeda, one difficulty isÂ the security forces are subverted. In March, a suicide bombing in Hadramout killed several South Korean tourists. Days later, another twisted teen-aged suicide bomber targeted a convoy of South Korean officials, laying in waitÂ as the route was known in advance. Fortunately, no one was killed in the second attack but the bomber.
In other news, the Yemeni government’s blockade on humanitarian aid for war refugees from the sixth Sa’ada War remains in place. The UN reported today thatÂ it could only reach 10,000 people this month down from 95,000 in July. The UNHCR appealed for funds from the international community and the Muslim world in particular. TheÂ US donated 2.5 million in wheat and beans. There are an estimated 150,000 civilians without food, water or medicine since the war broke out three weeks ago.
Yesterday, the Yemeni governmentÂ rejected out of hand the rebels offer of a humanitarian cease fire. The rebels posted a videoÂ showing the surrender of the 105th armored military brigade. (Independent reporting on the Sa’ada war is non-existent as reporters have been largely banned from the region since the wars began in 2004.) The rebels also set upÂ an office in Najaf, Iraq, which some Iraqi Shiite lawmakers feel is fine considering Yemen’s overt and covert support for Ba’athist and al Qaeda terror operations targeting the Iraqi government (and civilians). If the Sa’ada war continues to internationalize at the rate its going, its really going to get messy. Yemenis may be the new Palestinians, for the Shiite world at least.Â Iran anyone?