British embassy in Yemen closes for two days as Britons urged to leave
The Foreign Office are “strongly urging” British nationals to leave Yemen as the British embassy in Sana’a will be closing for two days following a terrorism warning issued by the US.
The warning has occurred after the US reportedly intercepted messages from al-Qaeda and as a result will close an estimated 21 embassies this coming Sunday. The Embassy will be closed on Sunday and Monday, and had already been working with a reduced number of staff due to concerns regarding security.
A spokesman for the Foreign Office called the closure a “precautionary measure” and refused to confirm whether it was the result of a specified threat.
Robin Simcox, a research fellow at The Henry Jackson Society, which monitors threats from the terrorist organisation, suggested that US authorities could have intercepted communications “between senior al-Qaeda leaders talking about an operational and clearly viable plot against an embassy”.
He went on to say that Yemen could be at a higher risk because of the fact that the US have increased drone attacks there in recent times, and al-Qaeda’s “most active franchise” is in the Arabian Peninsula.
It has been reported that very few British have remained in Yemen with Iona Craig, The Times’ correspondent in the country, stating that “the threat to foreigners here has definitely increased” recently.