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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Another senior US Embassy staffer assassinated in the Middle East

Qassem Aqlan, who headed a security team at the US embassy in Yemen, was shot dead by militants in the country's capital Sanaa on Thursday. The killing had the “fingerprints of Al-Qaeda,” a source told Reuters. The attack resembled previous attempts by local Al-Qaeda cells targeting security officials and politicians. Masked attackers on motorbikes gunned down Qassem Aqlan outside of his house on Thursday. The attackers fled the scene after killing Aqlan.
The embassy’s chief of security coordinated a US and Yemeni probe into the assault on the embassy. Last month, angry protesters attacked the embassy after the anti-Islamic video ‘Innocence of Muslims’ triggered a wave of violent demonstration across the Muslim world. Militants in Yemen have frequently targeted forces loyal to President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who succeeded Ali Abdullah Saleh in February. Washington backs the new Yemeni government with arms, recon data and drones in its struggle against Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.
The latest attack on government forces in Yemen occurred on Wednesday when militants fired rockets and automatic weapons at a security checkpoint in the southern city of al-Dalea, wounding two law enforcement officers. The attackers fled the scene. The US conducted a large number of ‘signature strike’ drone attacks in Yemen over the last two years, killing both militants and civilians. In 2011, American citizens Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan were assassinated in two separate strikes. Since then, the CIA has asked for the authority to broaden its controversial drone program to areas in Yemen where Al-Qaeda members operate. The agency is reportedly aware that it relies on limited intelligence to conduct the strikes, and often kills targets even when their identities are unclear. This controversial policy has sparked anti-US outrage in Yemen and elsewhere. Widespread backlash against similar strikes in Pakistan have all but forced Washington’s capricious ally to condemn drone attacks in the country.
Yemeni security officers and policemen inspect the site of an explosion at the entrance of a police academy in Sanaa on July 11, 2012 (AFP Photo / Mohammed Huwais)11.07, 15:1512 comments

At least 10 killed in Yemen police academy suicide attack (VIDEO)

A powerful explosion has rocked the police academy in Yemen’s capital, Sanaa. The blast, triggered by a suicide bomber, reportedly killed and injured dozens of people.
Forensic policemen inspect the site of a suicide bomb attack at a parade square in Sanaa May 21, 2012 (Reuters/Khaled Abdullah)21.05, 12:0520 comments

Ninety-six soldiers reported killed in Yemen attack

The death toll from a suicide blast in Yemen has risen to 96 soldiers. Over 300 were wounded. The troops were practicing for a national day parade in the capital Sanaa, the latest media reports say.
Global terrorism
The port side damage to the guided missile destroyer USS Cole is pictured after a bomb attack during a refueling operation in the port of Aden on October 12, 2000 (Reuters / Aladin Abdel Naby / Files)17.05, 08:305 comments

‘Al-Qaeda manipulated the US into putting sanctions on Yemen’

The US is moving to place sanctions on anyone who opposes what Washington calls a democratic process in Yemen. Anti-war activist Susan Lindauer says this brings the US right into Al-Qaeda’s trap.
AFP Photo / Bertrand Langlois13.05, 18:4853 comments

Plastic explosives: Al-Qaeda-trained surgeons put the bomb in suicide bombers

The hunt is on for doctors implanting explosives in suicide bombers in Yemen. Security has been stepped up at airports worldwide as surgically-doctored terrorists plot revenge attacks following the one-year anniversary of Osama Bin Laden’s death.
An unarmed U.S. "Shadow" drone is launched in this undated photograph (Reuters/AAI Corporation/Handout)19.04, 23:004 comments

CIA wants more drone strikes in Yemen

After the United States defended last year’s assassination of American citizens abroad with “signature strikes” carried out by its controversial drone program, the CIA is now asking Washington to expand its power to conduct those kills in Yemen.
An undated handout photo released on May 23, 2012 shows Abdelmalek Droukdel, aka Abu Musab Abdul Wadud, a leader of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), with his fighters in Azawad, an unrecognized state in northern Mali (AFP Photo/Al-Andalus)27.06, 07:3234 comments

Arabs awakening - so is Al-Qaeda

The head of UK intelligence, Jonathan Evans, says the turmoil that followed the Arab Spring allowed extremists to gain a foothold in the Arab world. Middle East peace activist, Franklin Lamb, believes that this warning is not groundless.
A US Predator unmanned drone (AFP Photo)19.06, 16:1038 comments

Unjustified killing: UN wants US drone attacks explained

A UN investigator has called on Washington to provide justification for the increasingly widespread use of military drones to carry out targeted killings. He says drone attacks, which take innocent civilian lives, may be violating international law.
A militant suspected of being a member of Al-Qaeda sits at a checkpoint in Azan in the southern Yemeni province of Shabwa on March 31, 2012 (AFP Photo/Str)24.05, 07:4114 comments

US unveils new tactics to tackle Al Qaeda propaganda

Hacking is a vital tool to fight extremist propaganda, US State Secretary Hillary Clinton has revealed. Washington has replaced Al Qaeda material on Yemeni tribal websites with information on damage the terror group has done to Yemeni civilians.

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