Iran-Backed Houthis Reportedly Raid U.S. Embassy In Sanaa, Yemen, Following Series Of Kidnappings Of Embassy Employees

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November 10, 2021

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On November 10, 2021, independent Yemeni media outlet Al-Masdar (The Source) Online reported that the Iran-backed Ansar Allah (Houthi) Shi'ite militia stormed the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, looting "large quantities of equipment and materials," according to an unidentified "informed source."[1]

The alleged raid comes after the Houthis kidnapped three Yemeni nationals affiliated with the U.S. Embassy from one of the employee's private residences in Sanaa on November 5.

An unidentified "source close to the victims' families" identified the employees to Al-Masdar Online as follows:

- 'Abd Al-Mu'in 'Azan, a former embassy employee who worked as a coordinator for the U.S.-Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI)

- Jamil Isma'il, the embassy's economic officer

- Hisham Al-Wazir, a USAID employee

Three weeks earlier, the Houthis also kidnapped 22 other unidentified embassy employees, according to Al-Masdar Online, "most of whom worked on the security staff guarding the embassy grounds."

In a press briefing on November 9, U.S. State Department Spokesman Ned Price acknowledged the kidnappings, noting: "The majority of those who have been detained are no longer in custody [... The U.S. Government] is committed to ensuring the safety of those who serve the U.S. Government overseas, and that is why we are so actively engaged on this matter."[2]

At the time of this reporting, the U.S. Government has not commented on reports that the embassy was raided.

Official Houthi sources have yet to comment on the kidnappings and the alleged raid.

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[1] Al-Masdar Online, November 10, 2021.

[2] U.S. State Department Press Briefing, November 9, 2021.

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