News / Middle East

Obama, Yemen Leader Discuss Counterterrorism, Reconciliation

President Barack Obama and Yemen's President, Abdo Rabby Mansour Hadi talk to the media as they meet at the White House, August 1, 2013, in Washington.
President Barack Obama and Yemen's President, Abdo Rabby Mansour Hadi talk to the media as they meet at the White House, August 1, 2013, in Washington.
U.S. President Barack Obama and Yemen's president, Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi, held talks at the White House Thursday on the political reconciliation process in Yemen, counterterrorism cooperation and economic assistance.

Hadi's visit to Washington came at a pivotal time as Yemen continues difficult national negotiations for political, economic and other reforms.

Obama, Hadi Discuss Yemen Counterterrorism, Yemen Reconciliation Stepsi
X
August 02, 2013 5:28 PM
In White House talks, U.S. President Barack Obama and Yemen's president, Abdo Rabbo Mansour Hadi, discussed political reconciliation in Yemen, along with counterterrorism cooperation and economic assistance. VOA senior White House correspondent Dan Robinson reports.]]

Since 2012, after former president Ali Abdullah Saleh stepped down following mass demonstrations, Hadi has overseen a National Dialogue involving more than 500 delegates from across Yemeni society.

Obama has said the process could serve as a model for peaceful transitions and after their talks, on Thursday he praised progress achieved so far.

"Because of his leadership, he has been able to initiate a national dialogue that can potentially bring the parties all together in Yemen, and produce a constitution and a transition to a fully democratic government that can serve the interests of the people," said Obama.

Hadi said, "In this national dialogue actually we proved that 75 percent of the population of Yemen are young -- that is less than 45 years of age. They're seeking the change, a dignified lifestyle, democracy, that is justice [and] equality in the country."

Security and counterterrorism cooperation were high on the agenda. The United States continues to help Yemen combat al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, considered the most active and lethal group plotting against America and its interests.

Obama praised Yemen's cooperation and internal military reforms, saying these helped push AQAP out of territories it controlled.

"President Hadi recognizes that these threats are not only transnational in nature, but also cause severe hardship and prevent the kind of prosperity for the people of Yemen themselves," he said.

Obama has defended U.S. drone strikes against suspected terrorists in Yemen and elsewhere. Reports Thursday said the latest strike in Yemen killed at least three suspected militants.

Although not mentioned in their public remarks, the two leaders were expected to discuss President Obama's pledge to repatriate dozens of Yemenis from the U.S. military detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Transfers have been blocked so far by ongoing concerns in the Obama administration and the U.S. Congress about security in Yemen.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said there would be no announcements about whether, when or under what circumstances Yemeni detainees would be repatriated.

"The lifting of the moratorium did not mean a mass exodus, it meant that we would then move to a case by case evaluation of each detainee, which has been the case [with] the non-Yemeni detainees," he said.

In a VOA interview, former U.S. ambassador to Yemen Barbara Bodine says the detainee question is among a series of issues as both countries seek to deepen their relationship.

"That [Yemeni Guantanamo detainees] is a critical issue to the Yemenis," she said. "His agreement to work on closing Guantanamo, to publicly support the transition government, to provide economic assistance, all of this is a signal from the Obama administration that we are moving beyond counter-terrorism to a more balanced relationship."

Bodine also said events in Syria and Egypt have focused the attention of Yemenis on the need to get their political transition process right.

Obama said the U.S. and international community remain committed to helping Yemen continue economic reforms that can help create jobs and stimulate growth as its transition continues.

You May Like

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said To Be Improving

Experimental drugs have been tried on six people: three Westerners and now, three African pyhysicians More

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities residents rebuild their lives, but many say everyone is being treated with suspicion More

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

Girls learn to object; FGM practitioners face penalties from jail sentences to stiff fines More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improvingi
X
Carol Pearson
August 19, 2014 11:43 PM
The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video Five Patients Given Experimental Ebola Drug Said to Be Improving

The World Health Organization has approved the use of experimental treatments for Ebola patients in West Africa. The Ebola outbreak there is unprecedented, the disease deadly. The number of people who have died from Ebola has surpassed 1,200. VOA's Carol Pearson reports on the ethical considerations of allowing experimental drugs to be used.
Video

Video In Ukraine, Fear and Distrust Remain Where Fighting has Stopped

As the Ukrainian military reclaims control of eastern cities from pro-Russian separatists, residents are getting a chance to rebuild their lives. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the town of Kramatorsk in Donetsk province, where a sense of fear is still in the air, and distrust of the government in Kyiv still runs deep.
Video

Video China Targets Overseas Assets of Corrupt Officials

As China presses forward with its anti-graft effort, authorities are targeting corrupt officials who have sent family members and assets overseas. The efforts have stirred up a debate at home on exactly how many officials take that route and how likely it is they will be caught. Rebecca Valli has this report.
Video

Video Leading The Fight Against Islamic State, Kurds Question Iraqi Future

Western countries including the United States have begun arming the Kurdish Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq to aid their battle against extremist Sunni militants from the Islamic State. But there are concerns that a heavily-armed Kurdistan Regional Government, or KRG, might seek to declare independence and cause the break-up of the Iraqi state. As Henry Ridgwell reports from London, the KRG says it will only seek greater autonomy from Baghdad.
Video

Video In Rural Kenya, Pressure Builds Against Female Circumcision

In some Kenyan communities, female genital mutilation remains a rite of passage. But activists are pushing back, with education for girls and with threats of punishment those who perform the circumcision. Mohammed Yusuf looks at the practice in the rural eastern community of Tharaka-Nithi.
Video

Video For Obama, Racial Violence is Personal Issue

The racial violence in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson is presenting U.S. President Barack Obama with an issue to which he has a deep personal connection. To many Americans, Obama's election as America's first black president marked a turning point in race relations in the United States, and Obama has made ending the violence a policy priority. On Monday he issued a new call for calm and understanding. Luis Ramirez reports from the White House.
Video

Video Clinton-Obama Relationship Could Impact 2016 Election

President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have a long and complicated relationship. That relationship took another turn recently when Clinton criticized the president’s foreign policy. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports there is renewed attention on the Clinton-Obama relationship as Hillary Clinton considers running for
Video

Video Iran Looks to Maintain Influence in Baghdad With New Shia PM

Washington and Tehran share the goal of stopping Syrian-based militants in Iraq. But experts say it's Iran, not the United States, that will most influence how the new government in Baghdad approaches internal reforms and the war in Syria. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns has the story.

AppleAndroid