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US to re-open 18 of 19 closed embassies this weekend

The State Department announced Friday evening that 18 of the 19 U.S. embassies and consulates closed in the Middle East and Africa due to a terrorist threat will reopen on Sunday.

The U.S. embassy in Yemen will remain closed “because of ongoing concerns about a threat stream indicating the potential for terrorist attacks emanating from Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula,” the State Department said in a statement.  

The American consulate in Lahore, Pakistan, which closed yesterday due to a separate threat will also remain closed, the government said.

Nineteen outposts had been closed to the public since last Sunday. Most American employees at the U.S. Embassy in Yemen were ordered to leave the country on Tuesday because of threat information.

An intercepted message on a conference call between Al Qaeda officials about plans for a major terror attack triggered the closures.

“We will also continue to evaluate information about these and all of our posts and to take appropriate steps to best protect the safety of our personnel, American citizens traveling overseas, and visitors to our facilities,” the State Department said.