US to Americans in Yemen: Seek Help From India

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

The U.S. government is telling Americans who want to escape the security chaos in Yemen to seek assistance from an NGO and India, according to a message from the evacuated U.S. embassy in Sanaa.

“There are no plans for a U.S. government-coordinated evacuation of U.S. citizens at this time,” noted a Monday message on the website for the U.S. embassy in Yemen, a component of the State Department. “If you wish to depart Yemen, you should stay alert for other opportunities to leave the country.”

China, India, France, Russia, Canada, and other countries have reportedly evacuated their citizens from war-torn Yemen.

Meanwhile, the abandoned U.S. embassy, in the April 6 message, announced that “the Indian government has offered to assist U.S. citizens who want to depart Yemen for Djibouti.”

The embassy also announced that “the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is planning to arrange a flight from Sana’a to Djibouti the week of April 6” and urged Americans in Yemen to contact the international migration rights NGO.

The message warned that “the Department of State cannot guarantee that all U.S. citizens seeking to depart via an IOM flight can be accommodated.”

All U.S. citizens seeking to leave the country must show valid United States passports.

An Indian government official revealed on Twitter that 23 countries, including the United States, have asked for India’s assistance with evacuating citizens from Yemen.

The official claims that the Indian government has already evacuated some Americans from Yemen.

Although the United States has military assets in the vicinity of Yemen, Marie Harf, a State Department spokeswoman, said last week that “doing something like sending in military assets, even for an evacuation, could put U.S. citizen lives at greater risk.”

Advocacy groups estimate that hundreds of Americans on Yemen, many with dual U.S.-Yemeni citizenship, need assistance.

The U.S. closed its embassy in Yemen after Iran-backed Houthi rebels seized the presidential palace and key government buildings in Sanaa.

“On February 11, 2015, due to the deteriorating security situation in Sanaa, the Department of State suspended embassy operations and U.S. Embassy Sanaa American staff were relocated out of the country,” noted the message. “All consular services, routine and emergency, continue to be suspended until further notice.  The Department notified the public of this move, and its impact on consular services, and urged U.S. citizens in Yemen to depart while commercial transportation was available.”

The U.S. military has also withdrawn its personnel out of Yemen. A U.S. military training mission was assisting the Yemeni government in combating the Yemen-based al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), considered to be one of the most dangerous jihadist groups.

On several occasions, the Pentagon asserted to Breitbart News that it was still capable of conducting counterterrorism operations in Yemen after the Houthi takeover.

Follow Edwin Mora on Twitter: @EdwinMora83.


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