Interpol head Ronald K. Noble, on his first visit to Yemen, met President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi on Sunday and appealed for international aid for Sanaa to combat terrorism and maritime piracy.
“The crimes which Yemen tackles on a daily basis, such as terrorism and maritime piracy have a global dimension and it is essential that they are provided the assistance they need, whether it is advanced technology or basics such as generators to keep their police stations open,” he said.
“The international community must continue to support Yemen in its efforts to prevent and turn back crime in all its forms,” Noble said in an Interpol statement.
He proposed aid to Yemeni police such as "biometric support in order for prisoners to be properly documented, enabling basic data such as photos and fingerprints, as well as more sophisticated iris scans, to be gathered".
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His visit came a week after 60 migrants from Ethiopia and Somalia along with two Yemeni crew members drowned when their boat sank off the coast of Yemen.
Noble praised Sanaa's efforts to combat maritime piracy, noting that more than 120 Somali pirates had been prosecuted in Yemeni courts.
But he also pointed out that the convicted mastermind of a 2000 bomb attack on the USS Cole, an American destroyer, that killed 17 US seamen in the southern port of Aden was still at large after having escaped from a Yemeni prison.
Ahmed Mohammed Ali al-Badawi was sentenced to 15 years in prison.
He is now on an Interpol Red Notice, or international wanted persons alert, issued at the request of US authorities.