Yemen to get new boats [Archives:2005/814/Local News]

February 7 2005

Mohammed bin Sallam
Yemen is due to receive eight military boats from France to enhance the effectiveness of the Yemeni coast guards recently established under the US supervision, says a government source.

On its part the USA is due to give in a later time an identical batch of military boats.

Al-Wahdawi weekly quoted the same source (on condition of an anonymity) as saying: “the Yemeni Coast Guard Authority will receive a new batch of European-manufactured military boats (8 French military boats) with a total cost of $10 million.

This batch is a new addition to seven military boats offered earlier by the US government, which is currently monitoring the Yemeni coastlines to prevent the infiltration of terrorist elements into the country.”

The source added: “the new French batch of boats is considered as a qualitative addition to equip the Yemeni coast guard forces. The imported boats are technologically equipped with modern radars and every boat has heliport.”

The US Embassy in Sana'a announced earlier that Washington is due to support Yemen with additional military boats in the framework of the security and military cooperation on the fight of terrorism.

The US administration fears that al-Qa'eda elements from Somalia, Afghanistan or Pakistan may infiltrate into Yemeni lands exploiting the length of the Yemeni coastline and the lack of monitoring on the part of Yemeni forces.

It is worth mentioning that US military experts are keeping on their training tasks for a number of coast guard officers in Aden, while many other military officers were sent to receive training in the USA and to know about the mechanisms followed up by the US coast guards.

Yemen and Malaysia agreed last year that the latter holds the task of training the Yemeni coast guard officers at the Malaysian Marine Academic. Currently there is a batch of Yemeni officers receiving training at the academic after a batch of 600 officers graduated last year.

In the fall of 2003, the Yemeni coast guard was established with the US support and supervision.