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Yemen Increasing Security Measures in Response to Failed Bombing

After Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab failed to properly detonate a bomb on an airliner entering Detroit on Christmas day, Abuubaker al-Qirbi, Yemen’s Foreign Minister has announced that his government will no longer issue visas upon arrival in the country. Qirbi and Daniel Benjamin, the top counterterrorism official in the U.S. State Department, have recently discussed measures to address the growing threat of radicalization in Yemen by adopting a “holistic” approach and concentrating on issues such as poverty and unemployment, among others. Yemen and the United States appear to be forging closer ties as Yemen anticipates approximately $63 million dollars in development aid in addition to supplementary military funding.

Yemen has also stepped up militarily as Yemeni fighter jets began a wave of raids last week targeting al-Qaeda operatives including Ayed al-Shabwani, an al-Qaeda leader based in the Arabian Peninsula. The Yemeni military has conducted at least four raids in and around the Maarib province which is approximately 130km outside of the capital, Sanaa. In past weeks the United States has also launched a series of airstrikes inside Yemen involving precision-guided missiles, although Yemen and the United States have so far refused to remark on the degree and scope of extra-military involvement.

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