Airstrike kills Red Cross worker in south of Yemen
Hussein Saleh, 35, a Red Cross worker was travelling with the local head of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in the southern province of Abyan yesterday.
When Yemeni’s air force carried out a bombing raid. In an official statement the ICRC said My Saleh, a Yemeni national, and three other staff members, “were assessing the humanitarian situation” in the troubled province, adding that “the circumstances behind this incident remain unclear”.
Mr Saleh, who was married with four children, is said to have been trying to negotiate the freedom of a French ICRC worker taken on April 22 and believed to be in the hands of al-Qaeda.
Few aid organisations have been able to operate in the south of Yemen amid the deteriorating security situation during the past year. A gang of armed men stormed a Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) hospital in the port city of Aden on Monday in an attempt to kidnap a patient, the aid agency revealed in a statement yesterday.
Mr Saleh’s death came as Yemeni forces advanced against islamists, holding areas in the south of the country. The offensive, under a US-devised military plan and supported by US advisers, has pushed Ansar al-Sharia the insurgent wing of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula — from four southern towns in the last week.
The Pentagon is reportedly making plans to deploy military cargo aircraft to help move Yemeni government troops and supplies in the battle against the insurgency.
Unnamed US officials quoted in the Los Angeles Times said the plan could include “providing Yemen’s troops with vehicles and other supplies”.