WASHINGTON, August 12 (RIA Novosti) – The United States embassy in Yemen remained closed Monday due to ongoing concerns about a possible terror attack, according to US media reports.
The Yemen facility and 18 other US embassies in the Middle East and Africa were closed last week after a message between two high-level al-Qaida leaders about an attack was intercepted. All of the other embassies re-opened over the weekend, according to The New York Times.
“Our embassy in Sana’a, Yemen will remain closed because of ongoing concerns about a threat stream indicating the potential for terrorist attacks emanating from al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula,” the US State Department said in a statement.
Such attacks, it said, could include “suicide operations, assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings, and bombings,” and possible targets include “high-profile sporting events, residential areas, business offices, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, schools, public areas, and other tourist destinations both in the United States and abroad.”
Yemen remains a hotbed of violence in the war on terror, with as many as nine US drone attacks that have killed several dozen suspected al-Qaida militants since the end of July, according to unnamed senior US intelligence officials quoted in The New York Times and other media outlets.
On Sunday, suspected al-Qaida gunmen killed five Yemeni soldiers guarding a natural gas facility in a southern province of Yemen, Reuters reported.
Meanwhile, the leader of Yemen’s al-Qaida affiliate and a onetime aide to Osama bin Laden posted a message on Monday promising to free militant prisoners and urging terrorists in jail to stay faithful to jihad, the Associated Press reported.
"Victory is imminent" wrote Nasser al-Wahishi on a website commonly used by the militants, adding, “rejoice... as your brothers are pounding the walls of injustice and demolishing the thrones of oppression."