Yemeni President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi met with Vice President Joe Biden at the White House on Thursday in the wake of violent protests over an anti-Islam Internet video made in the United States, the White House said Friday.
It said Biden joined chief White House counter-terrorism adviser John Brennan in the talks with Hadi, thanking him for his efforts in protecting US diplomats and the embassy in Yemen.
Four people were killed on September 13 as an angry mob of protesters tried to storm the US embassy grounds and clashed with security forces.
Biden assured Hadi of US commitment to supporting Yemen during its political transition, commended his efforts to restructure the military and organize a national dialogue and expressed support for its “strong and sustained counter-terrorism cooperation with the United States.”
After delivering his speech at the United Nations on Tuesday, President Barack Obama dropped by a separate meeting between Hadi and Brennan in New York to thank the Yemeni leader for helping secure the US embassy in Sanaa.
The US president sent a 50-strong force of US Marines to Sanaa to help secure the embassy following protests by Muslims angered by the US-produced film that offended many Muslims for denigrating Islam and its Prophet Mohammed.
The Yemeni parliament criticized the deployment of the additional Marines, but the Sanaa government provided reassurances that it was a temporary measure to which it had agreed.
Yemen is undergoing a difficult political transition after a year-long uprising unseated longtime ruler Ali Abdullah Saleh and left the economy of the Arabian Peninsula’s poorest nation in a shambles.
Global donors earlier this month in the Saudi capital Riyadh made aid pledges of $6.4 billion to Yemen, according to the World Bank, half of what Sanaa says it needs to weather the political transition.