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UK, German embassies reopen in Yemen

SANA, Yemen — The United Kingdom and Germany have reopened their embassies in Yemen’s capital, Sana, after being closed for about two weeks due to a terrorism threat.

British Ambassador Jane Marriott said Sunday that she and her team were ‘‘glad to be back and working in Yemen after this brief hiatus.’’ The German Embassy posted a statement on its website Sunday saying it had reopened.

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The United States closed 19 of its diplomatic missions in the Middle East and Africa after it intercepted a message between Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahri and Yemen’s Al Qaeda offshoot about plans for a major attack. The State Department has reopened all the posts except its Sana embassy.

After the secret message was intercepted, security was beefed up in Sana, particularly around embassies.

Washington considers the local Al Qaeda branch, also known as Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, to be the world’s most active.

An accelerated use of drone strikes in Yemen under President Obama and a US-backed offensive last year drove militants from territory they had seized a year earlier during Yemen’s political turmoil amid the Arab Spring.

There have been nine suspected US drone strikes in Yemen since July 27.

The drone attacks in that two-week period have killed 38 suspected militants in Yemen.

Last week, Al Qaeda militants killed three Yemeni soldiers in the southwestern tip of the Arabian Peninsula in what the military said was an attempt to capture a city.

The commander of the fourth military region, Major General Mahmoud el-Subaihi, said his forces used tanks to surround about 70 militants who are taking cover in residential homes in the provincial capital city of Hawtah in Lahj province.

Dozens of families from the impoverished city fled because of violence there.

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