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Yemen Prevents Volunteers From Heading To Iraq

By Adnan Abdullah

SANAA, April 3 - Yemen has banned more than 30 its nationals from traveling to Iraq to fight the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, airport sources said.

The sources said the volunteers were stopped at Sana'a airport, Yemeni International Airport, because they had one-way tickets to the Syrian capital Damascus. Syria borders Iraq and is a frequented route to Baghdad, Iraqi capital.

"Authorities banned the volunteers from boarding a Syrian Airlines plane bound for Damascus and confiscated their travel documents, the sources added.

An airport official said that the ban taken to respond to request from Syrian authorities that requested to band whose have new passports from traveling to Syria.

The volunteers clashed with security forces at the airport, breaking windows and seats. Many were rounded up while the rest staged a sit-in at the airport entrance.

The ban comes after a group of Yemeni volunteers marched through Baghdad streets, swearing to stage martyred attacks "suicide attacks" against U.S. and British forces in Iraq. The Yemeni authorities declined to comment on the ban.

One of Yemeni volunteer said that hundreds of Yemenis want to go to Baghdad to carry out jihad side by side their Iraqi brothers.

"Over the past several days, the Yemeni authorities have prevented hundreds of volunteers from traveling to Damascus or Amman after they found out their reason for travel," an opposition leader said

On Saturday evening, Iraqi vice-president Taha Yassin Ramadan gave a press conference, flanked by al-Sahaf. Ramadan made a powerful call for the Arab world to pursue the American and British enemy, and kill them by any means possible.

He claimed that at least four thousand fighters would follow without hesitation in the footsteps of the Iraqi soldier who had carried out the previous day's suicide attack. "Acts of martyrdom will continue, and not only by Iraqis, but also by thousands of Arab volunteers who have come to Baghdad. They have sworn never to return to their homeland. They want to remain in Iraq after their act of martyrdom".

ENDS


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