Brown calls London summit on Yemen

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Indy Politics

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has invited key international partners to a meeting to discuss how to counter radicalisation in Yemen after last week's failed attack on a US-bound plane, his office said on Friday.

Brown will host the event in London on 28 January. The high-level meeting will be held in parallel with an international conference on Afghanistan the same day.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a 23-year-old Nigerian who says he was trained by al Qaeda in Yemen, is accused of trying to blow up a US passenger jet as it approached Detroit on Christmas Day.

"The international community must not deny Yemen the support it needs to tackle extremism," Brown said in a statement.

His office said the London meeting would seek to encourage and coordinate efforts by international donors to foster development in areas of Yemen most at risk of radicalisation.

The meeting would discuss what the Yemen government needed to combat terrorism and seek international pledges to train Yemeni security forces, it said.

The meeting would also aim to improve coordination of international counter-terrorism efforts in the region and to promote economic, social and political reform in Yemen.

It said the meeting would be held in parallel with the previously announced conference on Afghanistan because the issues were inter-related and because key delegates would take part in both events.

Foreign ministers and some heads of government are expected to attend the Afghanistan meeting.

Brown's office said the prime minister's plans for the Yemen meeting had already received strong support from the White House and from the European Union.

"In the coming days, Britain also aims to secure backing from Saudi Arabia and Gulf countries," it said.