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U.S. withholds judgment on Yemeni attack

Oct. 12, 2012 at 11:10 AM

WASHINGTON, Oct. 12 (UPI) -- It's too early to draw conclusions on who was responsible for the killing of a Yemeni employee at the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, a U.S. official said.

The U.S. State Department confirmed Qassim Aklan, an employee at the U.S. Embassy in Yemen, was killed in an attack Thursday. He wasn't on the embassy grounds at the time of the attack, the U.S. government said.

The embassy was the scene of violent demonstrations last month. U.S. interests across much of the Middle East were targeted by those upset with a film produced in the United States seen as insulting to Islam.

Victoria Nuland, a spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department, said it was too early to make connections between September incidents and the attack in Sanaa.

"It is premature ... for us to be drawing conclusions about who did it, why it happened, all of those things," she said. Yemeni officials, she added, are in charge of the investigation.

A security official told the Yemen Observer on condition of anonymity the attack bore the hallmarks of al-Qaida. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Aklan worked as a liaison between embassy security officials and Yemeni authorities, the State Department said.

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