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Obama greets Yemeni president at UN

  • Yemeni President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi waves as he leaves number 10 Downing Street after a meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron in central London on September 24, 2012. Hadi, elected Yemeni president in February to lead a political transition, met with Cameron at Downing Street on September 24 in the first stop on his first tour to Western powers. AFP PHOTO / CARL COURT

ABoard Air Force One: President Barack Obama greeted President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi of Yemen on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly Tuesday to thank him for helping to secure the US embassy in Sanaa.

Obama dropped by a meeting between Hadi and top White House counter-terror advisor John Brennan after delivering his speech at the United Nations, deputy national security advisor Ben Rhodes told reporters.

Rhodes said that Obama stopped by the meeting with the Yemeni leader to say "hello, and to thank him for the steps he has taken to secure our embassy and our diplomats in that country."

Obama headed back from New York to Washington after just 24 hours at the UN -- the demands of his re-election campaign making him forgo his normal annual program of one-on-one talks with leaders at the world body's summit.

The US president sent a 50-strong force of US Marines to Sanaa to help secure the embassy following protests by Muslims angered by a US-produced film that was deemed offensive to Islam.

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.

 
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