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Firing squad executes Yemeni for 2002 killings of Southern Baptist medical workers

SAN’A, Yemen (BP)–A Muslim militant connected to the 2002 murders of three Southern Baptist medical workers in Yemen was executed Nov. 27.

Ali al-Jarallah was blindfolded and shot in the courtyard of the central prison in San’a, Yemen’s capital, according to the Associated Press and other news services. Al-Jarallah was convicted and sentenced to death in 2003 for plotting the medical workers’ deaths and for the assassination of a prominent national politician, Yemeni Socialist Party leader Jarallah Omar.

Yemeni authorities said Al-Jarallah planned the Dec. 30, 2002, attack on the former Jibla Baptist Hospital carried out by gunman Abed Abdul Razak Kamel. Kamel walked into the hospital compound that day and shot and killed hospital director William Koehn, physician Martha Myers and purchasing agent Kathleen Gariety. A pharmacist was seriously wounded but later recovered.

Kamel, also convicted and sentenced to death for the murders, remains in prison. No date has been set for his execution. Kamel admitted in court to coordinating the attack with al-Jarallah.

Yemeni officials believe both are tied to the al Qaeda terrorist network. Police reported finding audiotapes of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in Kamel’s home after the murders.

The Jibla hospital provided care for thousands of people in the impoverished Middle Eastern nation for more than 30 years after it was started by Southern Baptist workers. Reopened in early 2003 by the Yemeni government’s health ministry, it continues its healing work under the name Peace Hospital.

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