US prepares to evacuate Yemen embassy
In the past 48 hours, Houthi fighters targeted a US diplomatic vehicle, despite a reported ceasefire. No injuries were reported in the incident. (AFP/Getty Images/Mohammed Huwais)
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The USS Iwo Jima and USS Fort McHenry have moved into the Red Sea if needed to assist a potential evacuation of US embassy in crisis-hit Yemen. No tasking orders have, however, been issued yet.
Officials are "continuing to closely monitor developments in Yemen and will adjust the embassy’s security posture response in accordance to the situation on the ground,” a State Department spokesperson told ABC.
“We are deeply concerned about the turn of events in Yemen over the last few days,” he said, adding the embassy has been operating with “reduced staffing and heightened security,” the official added.
Yemen has been the scene of tensions after Houthi rebel fighters arrested Ahmed Awad bin Mubarak, President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi's chief of staff, at a checkpoint in the country’s western district of Hada a few days ago.
On Tuesday, Houthi rebel fighters in the poor country gained full control of the presidential palace in the capital, Sana’a.