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News | Gulf

Al Qaida takes advantage of Yemen crisis to resurface

Saudi Arabia, US worried about militants using country as launch pad

  • By Jumana Al Tamimi, Associate Editor
  • Published: 00:00 December 24, 2009
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: AP
  • Yemeni anti-terrorism soldiers perform during an exercise in tne Sarif region, on the outskirts of the Yemeni Capital Sana'a, last week.
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Dubai: After some years of relative silence in the region, Al Qaida seems to have resurfaced, taking advantage of political instability in Yemen.

The regrouping of Al Qaida in Yemen comes after it had been targeted in Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Iraq.

"Yemen, from a historical and factual perspective, has been a home to jihadists around the world," Dia Rashwan, an expert in Islamic movements, said.

"In the past couple of years we have witnessed a retreat by Al Qaida in different places," Rashwan told Gulf News. But he said things are changing and it seems as if Al Qaida is resurfacing.

Suicide attacks

Yemen said its security forces and warplanes had foiled a series of planned suicide bombings by attacking targets, including the Al Qaida training centre, last Thursday.

The air strike was carried out with American military and intelligence assistance, Yemeni officials confirmed.

Al Qaida responded with a rally in southern Yemen announcing that its war was with the United States and not the Yemeni army.

"There is a serious approach from the state to face Al Qaida, its members and to smash them," Yemeni information minister Hassan Al Lawzi told Gulf News. Lawzi termed the cooperation with Washington as "comprehensive and close".

Recent press reports said that Saudi Arabia and the US are worried that Al Qaida is trying to use Yemen as a launch pad for attacks in the kingdom and beyond.

Will the United States’ involvement in the fight against Al Qaida hurt or help the group? Do you think Al Qaia can ever be eradicated? Post a comment by clicking on the link below

Comments (3)

  1. Added 11:15 December 24, 2009

    The involvement of USA will help the group if it is perceived as a support for the existing regimes, otherwise the advanced technology of USA is required for confronting the group. I believe Al Qaeda will be eradicated temporarily but will resurface again if nurturing issues are not targeted.

    Elmi Ali, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  2. Added 10:33 December 24, 2009

    War is not only a solution......... People can talk with peace.... When there is a war in a contry & innocent people die there forms these groups to take revenge for loss of their belongings ........ So the point is that War does not end terror but its the formation of Terrirism.....

    Ahmad, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  3. Added 08:04 December 24, 2009

    Al Qaida can be eradicated, as long as all the countries irrespective of caste, creed, religion support the cause against terrorism. When certain countries/groups are protecting or not cooperating with other forces, Al Qaida will spread everywhere

    Dorairajan Ravi, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

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