Airmen from the United Arab Emirates stand by a Chinook helicopter in a military base in the frontline conflict zone of Marib in central Yemen September 17, 2015. REUTERS/Noah Browning
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The Emirates flatly denied allegations revealed in an Associated Press investigation last week that its forces were running secret prisons inside Yemen where detainees were tortured, calling it "completely untrue".Today, the UAE hosts Western forces at its military bases, including American and French troops. Jebel Ali port in Dubai serves as the biggest port of call for the American Navy outside of the United States.CLOSE WESTERN ALLYThe UAE was one of the most prominent Arab members to join the U.S.-led coalition striking Daesh targets in Syria. The UAE has suffered the most wartime casualties in its history in Yemen.Emirati forces were involved in a Jan. 29 Yemen raid ordered by U.S. President Donald Trump that killed a U.S. Navy SEAL and 30 others, including women, children and an estimated 14 militants.Last week, the AP documented at least 18 clandestine lockups across southern Yemen run by the UAE or by Yemeni forces created and trained by the Gulf country. South of Eritrea, in Somalia's breakaway northern territory of Somaliland, authorities agreed in February to allow the UAE to open a naval base in the port town of Berbera.
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