Yemen Bars Another US Helicopter from Landing in Aden
Yemen on Monday barred a US military helicopter from landing without permission in the port city of Aden, in the second such incident since the October 12 bombing of the destroyer USS Cole, a Yemeni official said.
"A (US) helicopter entered Yemen's airspace on Monday at around 0500 GMT and the authorities refused to let it land because it didn't have prior authorization," the official told AFP, asking not to be named.
On November 1, Yemen barred another US helicopter flight and slapped a ban on such aircraft from landing or entering its airspace without authorization.
All non-authorized flights would be dealt with as "hostile targets," a Yemeni air force source said. "Firm instructions were given to ban any helicopter from entering Yemeni air space without prior permission" from the authorities in Sanaa.
The helicopters take off from one of the several US ships off Yemen.
The ban came after more than 60 helicopter landings in Aden -- some reportedly without permission -- since suicide bombers blew a huge hole in the USS Cole in the southern port city of Aden killing 17 sailors.
Hundreds of US investigators and personnel poured into Aden by ship and plane after the blast.
On the same day as the ban was announced, the US State Department renewed Washington's demand for more cooperation from Sanaa in the investigation into the attack.
Despite requests from US President Bill Clinton, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and FBI director Louis Freeh, Washington was still looking to achieve the kind of cooperation it wants, a spokesman said.
"We've made quite clear that in the new phase of the investigation, we need more cooperation, we need extensive, different kinds of cooperation, different kinds of access to evidence, to information, different kinds of procedures," he said.
But the spokesman played down the ban -- SANAA (AFP)
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