Written By: Elena White
Article Date: May 12, 2012 - 9:05:57 PM
According to officials in Washington, the White house would have decided to resume its military training program in Yemen by sending back its “specialists” hoping to help the Yemeni armed forces to fight back al-Qaeda militants and thwart yet more terrorist attacks.
"We have begun to reintroduce small numbers of trainers into Yemen," a Pentagon spokesman, Navy Capt. John Kirby, told reporters.
As it happens the so-called trainers the U.S. is sending to Yemen are actually special operations forces troops which American official say are usually sent in covert operations.
With a serious deterioration of its security apparatus and the seemingly advances of al-Qaeda in Yemen despite much effort from the armed forces and even the tribes, the Pentagon felt it was time to reign down on terrorists and regain some of the lost ground.
Security analysts, amongst whom Aneesa Sulayman, based in Qatar, have long warned that the catastrophic humanitarian situation combined with political instability and a lack of control of the central government over its territories were playing the favor of the Islamists, stressing that time was at the essence as the terror group was digging its heels in Yemen further with every successful operation.
Yemeni Foreign Minister Abu Bakr al-Kirby said the return of U.S. military trainers to Yemen was for "routine military-to-military cooperation." He declined to provide details.
A U.S. military training program in Yemen was suspended last year after then-President Ali Abdullah Saleh was badly injured in a militant attack. At one point the U.S. had between 100 and 150 trainers there. The new president, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, who took over in February, has requested increased U.S. counterterrorist cooperation, including trainers and advisers.
• Yemen seizes military materiel
• Yemen: Democracy School certified as division of Defense for Children International
• Yemen’s army shells tribal areas after pipeline sabotage
• Sawa’a organization calls for Jewish involvement in Yemen’s National Dialogue
• US aircraft carrying soldiers, equipment lands in Yemen