Local News

Interior Minister: Yemen’s Priority is to Ensure Security of Elections

National Yemen

Minister Abdul-Qater Qahtan

By NY Staff

The Interior Minister Abdul-Qater Qahtan has said that Yemen’s priority was to ensure security of the upcoming presidential elections.

“The February 21st elections will be the biggest test for Yemen’s democracy,” Qahtan told Anadolu Agency’s correspondent in an exclusive interview.

Qahtan said that they would work to ensure a developed democracy in Yemen, and the priority of the Interior Ministry was to enable participation of all citizens in elections in a safe and secure way and therefore to ensure security in all cities.

The main obstacle before Yemen’s transitional process is the presence of Al Qaida in south and Shi’i-Sunni clashes in north, Qahtan said.

He said the transitional government was trying to take urgent measures to ensure security in those regions, and were working to make Al-Qaeda withdraw from cities.

The minister also said that Yemen wanted to cooperate with Turkey, particularly in restructuring its security department, and noted that Yemeni police officers need to learn from Turkey’s experiences.

Moreover, Qahtan said Yemen would speed up efforts to lift visa procedures with Turkey, and noted that Turkish Airlines (THY) was the only European airline company landing at the Sana’a airport. As such, he expressed his appreciation for THY’s decision not to halt flights even when Yemen was experiencing severe clashes.