WEB UPDATE: President of Yemen seeks medical treatment at GW

Posted Tuesday, May 1, 12:39 p.m.

The president of Yemen received medical treatment at GW’s Medical Faculty Associates Monday evening, an MFA official confirmed Tuesday.

President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who is head of state of the small republic on the Arabian Peninsula, is in D.C. this week for diplomatic talks with the U.S. government, according to news reports. He arrived on campus at about 5:45 p.m. and left at about 7:20 p.m., eyewitnesses to his motorcade said.

David Garofalo, spokesperson for the MFA, said Saleh was in the building for an unspecified “medical visit.” The outpatient medical center is located along 22nd Street, between I Street and Pennsylvania Avenue.

“It was nothing related to an emergency, or he would’ve gone to an emergency room,” Garofalo said. “We don’t comment on medical treatment, it’s a matter of privacy.”

Students and other bystanders walking up 22nd Street paused to look at the eight-vehicle motorcade, which also included a motorcycle escort. U.S. Secret Service agents and a Yemeni security detail accompanied Saleh.

Many passers-by thought Vice President Dick Cheney was inside the building, given the security presence and the fact that the second-in-command has had cardiological check-ups several times since a blood clot in March.

A White House spokesperson would not comment on Saleh’s stay in Washington or stop in Foggy Bottom, referring comment to the Yemeni Embassy. Spokespersons at the embassy have not returned messages left by The Hatchet since Monday.

Saleh arrived at Andrews Air Force Base Sunday night and has since met with members of Congress, the director of the FBI and the director of the International Monetary Fund, according to the Yemen News Agency. He is expected to meet with Bush at the White House Wednesday about strengthening relations between the two countries.

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