WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration is mulling an
unprecedented diplomatic act - whether to bar a friendly president
from U.S. soil.
American officials are evaluating a visa request from Yemeni
strongman Ali Abdullah Saleh (AH'-lee ahb-DUH'-luh sah-LEH'). He's
seeking treatment in the U.S. for injuries from a June
assassination attempt. But they want to make sure it's only for
medical treatment and that he isn't planning to stay.
Saleh has helped the U.S. against al-Qaida and is not under any
sanctions. But he is also accused of human rights violations.
Saleh will soon transfer power under a U.S.-backed deal to end
months of protests and violence.
Political asylum for Saleh, or the appearance of preferential
treatment, would be unpopular with Yemenis who fought to depose
their dictator of 33 years.