Come to Yemen

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The negative international press surrounding Yemen is making one person's job increasingly difficult ? the man who's trying to sell the country to would-be tourists. Anchor Marco Werman reports.

MARCO WERMAN: A quick additional note about Yemen, almost everything we hear from there is bad news. Terrorism, militants, corruption, not the kind of things that attract tourism. And, we should mention the State Department discourages non-essential travel by U.S. citizens to Yemen. Pity the man whose job it is the sell the country to would-be tourists.

MOHAMMED ELIZZANI: My name is Mohammed Elizzani. I'm the area manager for Yemen Airways in the U.S. A and Canada.

MARCO WERMAN: It's a tough job, but Mohammed Elizzani has got his own spin on things to do in Yemen.

MOHAMMED ELIZZANI: A perfect day would be like going to the old city of San'a, shopping, going to a Salteh restaurant, eating a Salteh dish and maybe, if they like, they could chew cot in Yemen, which is something that everybody does over there. Cot is a leaves that the old people chew and they just gather and they just chat and talk politic, everything else. So that's a perfect day. Not only in San'a, but in Aden.

MARCO WERMAN: By the way, cot is considered an illegal narcotic substance here in the United States. Yemen Airways Mohammed Elizzani in Brooklyn might want to fine tune his sales pitch a bit. We have more about Yemen, including a look at archeology there on The World's history podcast, how it got here. You can find it at the world dot org slash history.