To combat terrorismYemen and KSA enhance ties [Archives:2005/879/Front Page]

September 22 2005

Yasser Mohammed Al-Mayyasi
Jeddah, KSA- Sept. 20- Yemen and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia held a discussion on Tuesday on the enhancement of bilateral relations between the two bordering countries in economic, political, cultural and security areas and their joint efforts for fighting terrorism.

President Ali Abdullah Saleh and King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz chaired the meeting, which was attended by senior government officials from both countries.

The two leaders insisted on the fight against the terrorist groups in Yemen and the KSA who launched several terrorist attacks leading to human and property losses in the neighboring countries.

By virtue of joint security cooperation, both governments could score victories over terrorists and arrested wanted people in Yemen and Saudi Arabia. The exchange of information between security apparatuses in the two bordering countries played an integral role in the capture of wanted people who operate in armed gangs that plot to carry out offensives on western interests in Yemen and Saudi Arabia.

In March this year, Anwar al-Jailani, an Iraqi with a Swiss citizenship and a leader of a gang pursuing its activities in Yemen, confessed that he has been authorized and backed by Saudi nationals to launch suicide operations on foreign embassies in SANA'A. He also made a confession that his gang could smuggle arms and explosives to the KSA to carry out terrorist attacks in the Kingdom, but all their attempts had failed because of the good coordination between security apparatuses in both countries.

President Saleh's visit to the KSA is the first of its kind since King Abdullah assumed the Saudi throne. The visit came at a time when the two countries are preparing to submit their diagrams on the border points that have been implemented by one of the German companies to put an end to border disputes between the two states.

Both governments signed a memorandum in the Saudi city of Makka under which the Tayef Accord has been taken as a starting step for developing the bilateral ties between Yemen and Saudi Arabia.

Efforts exerted by the two governments could score important achievements and settle the crisis over the border dossier. The course of Yemeni-Saudi relationships has become more apparent after the successful coordination following the 1994 war on rebellion in Yemen.

King Abdullah has shown a positive stand towards improving relations between his country and Yemen. After he assured power, he immediately ordered the release of 1200 Yemeni people who had been imprisoned in Saudi prisons for their illegal immigration.

Observers considered King Abdullah's conduct as an important step for improving ties as the two countries started to lose confidence in each other mainly after the Second Gulf War, which forced around one million Yemeni expatriates to leave their business and return home. The return of expatriates helped raise the unemployment rate and exacerbate the national economy in a country suffering from a lack of investment projects.

Under the new Saudi leadership, Yemen restored hope and believed that bringing a real development is the only means for fighting terrorism, a fact that cannot be achieved unless there is a joint cooperation.

The Yemeni people hope the KSA to open new horizons, beyond cooperation, to allow their return to work in the kingdom in order to restrict unemployment and the ailing economy in Yemen.