WASHINGTON, Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Slightly more than a year after a bomb ripped through the hull of the USS Cole while it was docked in a Yemeni port, President Bush met Tuesday with Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh in Washington for talks about the investigation of the attack and the U.S.-led campaign against terrorism.
Saleh, talking to reporters after the meeting, said he and the president discussed the attack in his country, the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on Washington and New York, and the bombing of two U.S. embassies in East Africa in 1998.
The White House said Bush was happy with Yemen's cooperation in the U.S.-led war on terrorism.
Press Secretary Ari Fleischer said Yemen cooperated in the investigation of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington as well as the bombing of the USS Cole -- an Arleigh Burke-class Aegis-equipped guided-missile destroyer.
Yemen sits in the southwestern corner of the Arabian Peninsula, bordering Saudi Arabia to the north, the Red Sea to the west, Oman to the east and the Gulf of Aden to the south. It was in Yemen's port of Aden that the USS Cole was attacked on Oct. 12, 2000, with an explosives-laden boat, while it was refuelling. Seventeen sailors were killed and 39 others were injured.
Washington has blamed both attacks on Saudi exile Osama bin Laden and his al Qaida network. On Oct. 7, nearly a year after the attack on the USS Cole, the United States launched attacks against Afghanistan in response to the assaults on New York and Washington that killed more than 3,000 people.
Yemeni and American law enforcement officials investigated the case in tandem, recently agreeing to delay the trial in the USS Cole bombing until additional evidence could be obtained.