Wednesday, August 31, 2011

6 women named as potential al-Qaeda recruits by US cable

Melbourne, Aug 31 (PTI)

Whistle-blowing site Wikileaks has released a secret US diplomatic cable which has named some six women living in Australia as potential targets of an al-Qaeda plot to recruit women for terror attacks.

The women - four Australians, a Briton and a Filipino - are among 23 people based in Australia, alleged by Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) and the US State Department to be connected to al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

The latest batch of confidential and secret cable, written by the US embassy in Canberra in January last year, was sent to US intelligence agencies and 15 American diplomatic stations around the world.

"Recent threat information suggests (al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula) is looking to identify a female for a future attack," the cable states referring to the organisation's most internationally active branch, local media reported today.

The document claims al-Qaeda has been looking to recruit women for future terrorist attacks.

Australia has flayed whistle-blowing site, calling it "incredibly irresponsible" for publishing the cable detailing Australians with suspected links to Yemeni terrorism.

Wikileaks cables have also reportedly revealed there was a split between the Government and Reserve Bank over the handling of the economy during the global financial crisis.

The branch, referred to as AQAP, is believed to have played a role in most attempted attacks in the West since 2009.

Of particular concern to intelligence agencies is a belief that many on the list have been in contact with AQAP's chief propagandist and radical preacher, Anwar al Awlaqi, a US citizen believed to be a key figure in AQAP

Some of the people named in the secret US diplomatic cable, including Sheikh Abdel Zoud, the cleric at Sydney's Belmore Mosque, have strongly rejected the claims, saying they bear little relation to the truth.

There are concerns that those on these lists disappear off "the passport radar" in countries such as Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates.

They then travel to countries like Yemen and Pakistan for terrorism training.

The report said the quality of the information has been questioned by Sydney cleric. He was quoted as saying that he had no idea why he was on the list as he had never been to Yemen, had never spoken to al Awlaqi, sent him money nor visited his website.

The 23 names were given by ASIO to the US, which put them on the "Visas Viper" programme, a database used for watch-listing suspected terrorists.

Eleven were banned from flying in the US, and the other 12 were subject to increased security screening.

The government has termed the publication of the information has been could compromise Australia's national security -- or inhibit the ability of intelligence agencies to monitor potential threats -- is incredibly irresponsible.

The government has condemned the publication of the document as it "could seriously impact Australia's national security."

"The publication of any information that could compromise Australia's national security -- or inhibit the ability of intelligence agencies to monitor potential threats -- is incredibly irresponsible," Attorney-General Robert McClelland was quoted as saying in the media.

Houthis Celebrate Eid Holiday Late; Sectarian Differences Grow

Sana'a, August 31, 2011, In the strong clear sign of sectarian differences in Yemen, Sunni Muslims celebrated Eid holiday on Tuesday, on the same day as Saudi Arabia and gulf countries, while the pro Shite Houthis followed the Iranian example of fasting one more day and delaying Eid until Wednesday.

Houthis called on their followers in the northern Sa’ada province to fast Tuesday and not follow the regime’s order.

A small number of residents listened to the Houthis call as the majority of Sa’ada province celebrated Eid on Tuesday.

Iran is one of the few Muslim nations that delayed Eid holiday to Wednesday and experts believe that Houthis are trying to differentiate themselves from the pro Sunni regime in Yemen.

Experts fear that the next war in Yemen is not a political one, but rather sectarian, like what is seen today in Iraq.

More than 60 percent of Yemenis are Sunni while less than 40 percent follow the Zaidi sect of Islam, a pro Shite sect.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

President Saleh addresses Yemeni community in Saudi capital

RIYADH-August 30, 2011- A speech was delivered on Tuesday by President Ali Abdullah Saleh in a meeting with members of the Yemeni community in the Saudi capital Riyadh on the occasion of the Eid al-Fitr.
In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate,
Brothers of the Yemeni community in Saudi Arabia, have a blessed Eid, and a happy and prosperous new year. This is the first time I celebrate the Eid outside the country and I am pleased to celebrate it with brothers from the Yemeni community in Saudi Arabia and under the patronage of King Abdullah Bin-Abdul-Aziz.
We have received the care and recognition from the moment we set foot in this neighbourly and host country. My colleagues and I in the political leadership, civilians and military, have received superior medical care in the Armed Forces Hospital, King Faysal Specialist Hospital, the National Guard Hospital, and all the other hospitals in Al-Taif and Jeddah. This took place under the patronage of King Abdullah which is something that neither we nor our people shall forget for many generations to come.
The Jeddah Treaty has opened new horizons in the brotherly relations between the two neighbourly countries which were difficult notably after many years of give and take but were resolved by a political decision in Jeddah and with the political will of King Abdullah.
Hence, the Yemeni community in the Kingdom received attention and care from the King, the Kingdom's leadership, the princes, and all the civilian and military brothers in the Kingdom.
The Yemeni community, which amounts to approximately 1.2 million, is in a very good condition. They work in several facilities, whether official, popular, government, or commercial. They are the best ambassadors to Yemen in Saudi Arabia in terms of behaviour, high morals, integrity, and honesty which we pride ourselves on.
Our community in the Kingdom has earned the respect of their brothers in the Kingdom. I am very satisfied with the understanding, brotherhood, solidarity, and tolerance within the Yemeni community in the Kingdom as well as in the United States, the United Kingdom, the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar.
I hope that the tolerance and brotherhood which exist within the Yemeni communities abroad reflect in the same manner in Yemen without hatred or envy. The grace of God is to those who work diligently. We highly value this good behaviour of our Yemeni community in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. I urge you to be perseverant and patient and as is the case to renounce hate and envy.
What is happening in Yemen is a result of hatred, envy, chronic disease, and long-time accumulations. It is all accumulation, hate, and envy. He who does not own something cannot give it away. Those who went to the so-called Sana’a University Square to support the youth revolution and call for the downfall of the regime - which achieved unity, freedom, democracy, extracted minerals and oil, opened roads, and built universities - aim at bringing another regime filled with corruption, and arms and land dealers who believe they are above the law before the security personnel in Yemen.
The corrupt people fled to the University Square to corrupt others. No matter what they say, our people know them well enough and know who they are. They were a burden on the political system. They complained that the political system defended and protected the corrupt. If there should be complaints about the political system, it would be against those who went to the university squares. So let them and their likes be gone [applause]; they are corrupt liars and deceivers.
Our people know very well who they are whether they are in Yemen or abroad. From God came the broadcast, audio-visual, print media, and satellite channels to reveal everything and show everything for what it is. You can tell a person from his posture, smile, the wrinkles on his face, painted smiles, and a false rhetoric. It is shameful that they have no disgrace in lying.
This is the biggest disgrace, say what you like but say the truth. They are liars, they speak and a person who does not even know them can tell that they are lying. You can tell that they are lying just by looking at their faces, the wrinkles on their face, and the tone of their voices, and their gestures. Some of those who preach cannot put two sentences together and others - who are hired to write speeches - do the job for them. Some political parties were proficient in finding hired people, whether they ran for presidency, for government or military positions; they were proficient in choosing those parasite elements that are only good at sabotage. Sabotage is easy but building is hard and requires will, determination, resolution, and generosity.
In all cases, I reiterate my congratulations to you, members of the Yemeni community in Saudi Arabia and all over the world and I hope that the people in Yemen follow the example of their brothers abroad in terms of honesty, brotherhood, tolerance, forgiveness, understanding, and generosity.
These are the good ambassadors of Yemen; the Yemen of 22 May 1990. These are the good ambassadors and I hope you remain as such, honest, trustworthy, fulfilling your duties sincerely, serving this country in which you reside, your families and Yemen.
Once more, congratulations on the blessed occasion of the Eid al-Fitr.
May God's peace, mercy, and blessings be upon you.

Yemen denies reports of landmine attack on Defense Minister

SANA’A, August 30 (Saba)- Yemen’s Defense Ministry denied on Tuesday media reports claim that a convoy of the Defense Minister was hit by a landmine blast in Abyan province and two of his bodyguards were killed.

Speaking to Saba, a source in the ministry confirmed that Defense Minister Major General Mohammed Nasser Ahmed was not subjected to any attack, adding those reports were unfounded at all.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Yemenis able to overcome current crucial stage, President Saleh

SANA’A, August 29 (Saba)- President Ali Abdullah Saleh said on Monday evening that the Yemeni people can find several constitutional solutions to overcome the current crucial stage of the country.

In an address to the Yemeni people and the Arab and Islamic peoples on the occasion of the Eid al-Fitr, which marks the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan, President Saleh said "As the important national role took by Vice President Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi is successful, we can find many of the constitutional solutions to overcome this dangerous phase of the history of our people, which threatening our unity, freedom and democracy".

"The road is clearer to determine the priorities for the implementation of the next steps within the framework of respect for the Constitution and to comply with the maintenance of constitutional legitimacy", he added.

Saleh went on to say: "We Yemenis have correct and accurate knowledge to the best interests of the people and the country ..... and a clear view that has been declared and committed by us in previous initiatives, including the initiative of the Gulf Cooperation Council and a statement of the UN Security Council, to apply deferred legal and constitutional duties and prepare for free elections of a new president of the country".

President Saleh pointed out that he had authorized the General Committee of the General People's Congress to hold talks with the leadership of the Joint Meeting Parties, the foreign ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council member states and the US and EU ambassadors to Yemen for agreeing on an operational mechanism to apply the GCC initiative and sign it without procrastination or delay.

Qaeda chief tells Saudi prince to expel non-Muslims

Sana'a, August 29, 2011, A senior Saudi member of Al-Qaeda warned the interior minister that he should expel non-Muslims from the kingdom.

A senior Saudi member of Al-Qaeda warned the interior minister that he should expel non-Muslims from the kingdom, among other demands to stop considering him a target, in an online audio message.

Ibrahim al-Rubeish, a former Guantanamo detainee, addressed Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz with seven measures which he considered essential for "reform" in the ultra-conservative Gulf state and for the prince's own safety, SITE Intelligence reported on Monday.

The measures included expelling non-Muslims from the Arabian Peninsula, repealing all man-made laws and instituting (Islamic) sharia-based governance, the US-based monitoring service said.

They also included releasing prisoners, allowing preachers to speak with impunity and removing themselves as obstacles to those who wish to support Muslims in Iraq and the Palestinian territories, it added.

"This is the path if you wish to survive. If you do this, I will guarantee that the mujahedeen will not prepare another trap for you and that you will sleep safely in your bed and you will go as you please without fearing anyone," Rubeish said.

He was alluding to an incident earlier this month when a gunman fired at Prince Nayef's palace near the Saudi Red Sea city of Jeddah.

Saudi Arabia witnessed a wave of deadly attacks by Al-Qaeda between 2003 and 2006, which prompted Prince Nayef to launch a security force crackdown on the local branch of the jihadist network founded by Saudi-born Osama bin Laden.

Al-Qaeda remains very active in neighbouring Yemen, where the Saudi and Yemeni franchises of Al-Qaeda joined forces under the banner of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

A suicide bomber from the group blew himself up in August 2009 in an abortive attempt on the life of Prince Nayef's son, Prince Mohammed, who leads the campaign against Islamist militants in the kingdom.

In comments published by Saudi daily Al-Eqtissadiya on Monday, Prince Nayef said that terrorism would remain a threat to the kingdom.

"We will continue to be a target for terrorists, who will continue attempting to attack us, supported by other parties," the newspaper quoted him as saying.