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Homeland Security

British PM Calls for Meeting on Yemen Extremism

VOA News 01 January 2010

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown will hold an international meeting in London on January 28 to find ways to fight extremism in Yemen.

The meeting comes after a Nigerian man allegedly attempted to blow up a passenger plane flying from Amsterdam in the Netherlands to the U.S. city of Detroit on Christmas Day on December 25. The suspect, 23-year-old Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, has told U.S. investigators he got training and explosives in Yemen.

Mr. Brown says the goals of the meeting include identifying counterterrorism needs faced by Yemen, coordinating assistance for areas at high risk for radicalization, and helping Yemen with the wider challenges that it faces.

The high-level meeting will take place at the same time as a planned international conference on Afghanistan.

Yemen has intensified its campaign against rebels and suspected al-Qaida terrorists, conducting a series of airstrikes and other raids it says has resulted in militant deaths and arrests.

Earlier this week, a group known as al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula claimed responsibility for the attempted bombing.

The head of the U.S. Central Command, General David Petraeus, told reporters in Baghdad Friday that Yemeni authorities have carried out "very significant" operations against al-Qaida, some of which prevented a series of suicide bombings.

General Petraeus said the United States is helping Yemen, but that its neighbors have also provided significant assistance.


Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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