AL QAEDA CELL IN YEMEN SENTENCED

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A Yemeni court in the capital Sanaa has sentenced, on Monday 07/13/2009, 6 Yemeni citizens to death for murdering nine Spanish and Belgian tourists over the past two years.

The men were found guilty of attacks including one that killed seven Spanish tourists at the Queen of Sheba temple in Marib in 2007 (see – Marib Suicide Attack)  and two Belgian tourists in the Hadramaut region in 2008 (see – Hadarmut 01.18.08 ).

Ten other defendants, 5 Yemenis, 4 Syrians and a Saudi of Yemeni origin, were sentenced to jail terms ranging from eight to 15 years. The defendants shouted religious chants of defiance and prayed as each sentence was announced.

The 16 defendqants were also accused of mortar attacks on the USA and Italian embassies and a foreign housing complex in Sanaa (see – Sanaa 03.18.08). Al-Qaeda had claimed responsibility for the attacks as well as an attempted attack on an oil refinery.

* In another case, related to the Saada Rebels, three more Shiite rebels were sentenced to death, on Tuesday 07/14/2009. The court also sentenced six other rebels to jail terms of 5-15 years for participating in the fighting.
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