Turkish embassy in Yemen downsizes staff over security concerns, no evacuation yet
Sevil Erkuş - email@example.com ANKARA
Policemen stand guard at the entrance of the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015. AP PhotoThe Turkish embassy in Yemen has decreased its staff to a minimal level due to the unpredictable security situation in the Arabian peninsula state, where a rebel group has seized control of the capital, a Turkish official told Hürriyet Daily News.
Ankara has not made a decision on whether to evacuate the embassy, but that option “has been considered,” the official said, noting they are not at that point yet. Turkish embassy officials are still able to keep contacts in Yemen, said the official.
Employees of the U.S. embassy in Sanaa reportedly said Washington may ask the Turkish or Algerian embassies in the city to look after U.S. interests, though they have not demanded such a contribution from Turkey yet, a Turkish Foreign Ministry official told Daily News on Feb. 11.
Last month, Iran-backed Shi’ite Muslim Houthi fighters, who had captured the capital in September, seized the presidential palace, driving President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi and his government to resign.
After years of crisis, Yemen now risks descending into a full-blown civil war pitting regional, political, tribal and sectarian rivals against each other in a nation that shares a long border with top global oil exporter Saudi Arabia.