By Fatik al-Rodaini
SANA'A, April 7, 2012- Yemen’s air force commander, General Mohamed Saleh al-Ahmar, denied allegations on Saturday that his troops prevented all air traffic movement at Sana’a International Airport and that he had ordered the destruction of one of the towers.
In a statement posted on the Internet he said that gunmen, who belong to Bani Al-Hareth tribe, launched an assault against the airport as they sought to force the government into compensating them, after several parcels of land were requisitioned to build the country’s next international airport.
“We don’t have any intentions of stopping all flights at Sana’a airport,” the statement read.
Earlier Saturday morning, local news websites reported that gunmen loyal to former Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh attacked the country’s main airport with mortars, as a result of the threat all flights were canceled.