July 10 -A top American official met Yemen's President Saleh in Saudi Arabia to urge him to hand over power quickly. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
U.S. President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism official met Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh in Saudi Arabia to urge him to hand over power quickly. U.S. envoy John Brennan brought a message from Obama to Saleh, who is recovering from serious injuries sustained in an attack on his presidential compound last month. The meeting was filmed by Yemen TV, showing Saleh sitting with gloves covering his hands and wearing slippers. The United States until recently backed Saleh as a bulwark against regional instability and in particular against al Qaeda. But now the U.S. thinks Saleh should yield to a six-month-old popular uprising against his 33-year-rule. The White House issued a statement saying that Brennan called on Saleh quickly to fulfill a pledge to sign a Gulf-brokered deal for a peaceful handover. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters