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Japanese diplomat stabbed five times in Yemen

The country’s capital has been the scene of a spate of attacks on foreigners recently.

Yemeni military police stand guard outside a national security court.
Yemeni military police stand guard outside a national security court.
Image: Hani Mohammed/AP/PA

ASSAILANTS STABBED A Japanese diplomat in Yemen as he drove his car today in the capital Sanaa, scene of a recent spate of attacks on foreigners, the embassy said.

The consul and second secretary at the embassy suffered five stab wounds in the morning attack as he drove through the neighbourhood of Hadda, an embassy spokesman said.

It was unclear if the attack was an attempt to kidnap the diplomat. Kidnappings are frequent in Yemen, an impoverished nation where armed tribesmen and al-Qaida-linked militants take hostages in an effort to swap them for prisoners or cash.

“He is ok now. He is in hospital,” said the spokesman, who declined to disclose the name of the consul.

The spokesman said he had been driving ahead of the consul, but when he arrived at the embassy, he discovered that the consul was no longer following.

The diplomats had been driving without any guards, he added.

In late November, unidentified gunmen killed a Belarussian defence contractor and wounded another in an attack outside their hotel in Sanaa.

- © AFP 2013 with additional reporting from Associated Press.

Read: Suicide bomb attack kills dozens in Yemen>

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