Clinton Says US Ship Blast ‘Appears’ to be Terrorism
US President Bill Clinton said Thursday that the attack on a US Navy ship in Yemen "appears" to be terrorism, and vowed to apprehend those responsible.
"If, as it now appears, it was an act of terrorism, it was a despicable and cowardly act," the president told reporters.
"We will find out who was responsible, and hold them accountable," he said.
Earlier Thursday, an inflatable raft rammed a US navy destroyer in the Yemeni port of Aden, igniting an explosion which killed four US sailors, left 10 missing and 35 wounded in what the Pentagon suspected was a terrorist attack.
The president said he had ordered heightened security for US forces in the region, as tensions mount amid increasing violence there.
"I have ordered our ships in the region to pull out of port and our land forces to increase their security," he said.
Clinton added, however, that the United States would not be deterred from trying to secure peace the Middle East.
"If their intention was to deter us from our mission of promoting peace and security in the Middle East, they will fail, utterly," he said -- WASHINGTON (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)