Signs of Iran activity in Yemen, US envoy says

By REUTERS
February 20, 2012 14:38

SANAA - Iran is becoming more active in Yemen and could pose a deeper threat to its stability and security, the US envoy to Yemen said on Monday, highlighting what would be yet another layer of uncertainty in a near-failed state.

US Ambassador Gerald Feierstein's warning is likely to reinforce long-held fears among Sunni Gulf monarchies that Shi'ite Muslim power Iran is trying exploit regional unrest.

"We do see Iran trying to increase its presence here, in ways that we believe are unhelpful to Yemen's stability and security," Feierstein said in an interview one day before Yemenis head to the polls to elect a new president to replace Ali Abdullah Saleh, ending his three decades in power.

The election, where Vice President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi is the sole candidate, is part of a power transfer plan backed by the United States and brokered by Gulf Arab countries after a year of protests against Saleh's rule.


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