Man charged in helicopter attack [Archives:2004/717/Front Page]

March 4 2004

Mohammed Al-Qadhi
Yemeni authorities have arrested the person who fired at a military helicopter in al-Hadda, Dhamar governorate, 120 km to the south of the capital Sana'a.
There were conflicting reports over the cause of the emergency landing of the hit helicopter. While sources at the local authority of the governorate said the plane caught gun fire coming from party celebrating a wedding, a security officer at al-Hadda district said that the arreste man, Amran Saleh Saad, 24, was firing his gun and when he saw the helicopter he shot it causing damage to the fuel store.
Eyewitnesses said that the pilot, who was flying not far from the land, was able to make an emergency landing which caused no casualties or serious damage to the helicopter.
The sources said the attacker surrendered himself to the authorities after a massive arrest campaign against suspects in the area. A security official confirmed that there is no political motive behind this incident.
A team of pilots belonging to the air force went to the spot and were able to repair the damage and flew the helicopter back to Sana'a.
A political analyst said that it is usual that the authority denies any political motive behind similar incidents.