Yemen, GCC countries stop Bin Laden recruits : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread


ABU DHABI [MENL] -- Yemen and Arab Gulf countries have prevented efforts by Saudi billionaire fugitive Osama Bin Laden to recruit thousands of supporters to counter U.S. forces in the war in Afghanistan.

Sanaa and its neighbors in the Gulf Cooperation Council states have refused to allow Islamic fighters from Africa to pass through their countries on their way to Afghanistan. Both diplomatic sources as well as those from the Islamic opposition said many suspected Islamic sympathizers of Bin Laden have been turned away from the borders of Yemen as well as GCC member states Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The sources said several of the countries, particularly Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Yemen, have arrested more than 40 Islamic militants suspected of recruiting for Bin Laden. They said Yemen and the GCC countries have been cooperating in stopping the flow of Islamic fighters to Afghanistan.

The issue of Islamic support for Bin Laden is expected to be raised on Monday when GCC interior ministers convene in Riyad. GCC secretary-general Jamiel Hujailan said the meeting would discuss regional tension in wake of the Sept. 11 suicide attacks on New York and Washington.

In Yemen, authorities have closed the port in Aden to stop the arrival of Islamic militants from Sudan and other African countries. Yemen has also increased its naval presence in the Red Sea to prevent Islamic insurgents from crossing from Africa to the Arabian Peninsula.

The sources said two Yemeni warships have been deployed at Bab El Mandab, regarded as the mouth of the Red Sea.

In neighboring Saudi Arabia, authorities report an anthrax scare. So far, 27 suspected cases of anthrax have been reported. None of the cases has yet been confirmed and Saudi civil defense director Maj. Gen. Saad Bin Abdullah Al Tewejri said no traces of the virus have been found.

-- Martin Thompson (, October 29, 2001

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