Yemen pledges urgent reforms to tackle Al Qaeda militancy

Young Yemeni street vendors, selling balloons and national flags, wait for customers on a main road in the capital Sanaa yesterday. (AFP)

The Yemeni government recognises the need for urgent economic and political reforms to help fight Al Qaeda militancy which risks threatening regional stability, according to a draft document at an international conference.

In the statement, obtained ahead of London talks, major powers committed themselves to supporting the Yemeni government, which agreed to pursue discussions with the International Monetary Fund to tackle poverty which is conducive to radicalisation.

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown called the meeting after a Yemen-based Al Qaeda affiliate said it was behind a failed attempt to blow up a US-bound plane with 300 people on board.

“The challenges in Yemen are growing and, if not addressed, risk threatening the stability of the country and broader region,” the statement said.

 

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