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Yemenis Insist on Saleh's Ouster

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TEHRAN, Feb 27 (ICANA) – Hundreds of thousands of Yemeni pro-democracy protesters have taken to streets of the capital Sana'a, demanding for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down from his 32-year rule.
Sunday, February 27, 2011 10:00:36 AM
Yemenis Insist on Saleh's Ouster

Yemenis gathered near the University of Sana'a on Saturday as pro-democracy protesters showed no sign of abating from their primary demand for a regime change in the poor Arab country. "The people demand the regime to step down," the demonstrators shouted. "We are not intimidated by thugs" and "We do not fear the sounds of canons," they chanted. Yemen's Deputy Parliament speaker Hamir Al-Ahmar, who has resigned from the ruling People's Congress Party, also took part in the protest. Yemeni people staged similar protests in the cities of Amram, Taiz and Aden almost two weeks after the pro-democracy protests kicked-off in the Yemeni capital. Dozens of demonstrators have been killed and hundreds more injured by Yemeni security forces and Saleh's loyalists during the protests. Major tribes in Yemen also joined the pro-democracy protests against Saleh's despotic rule on Saturday. The Yemeni tribal leaders, including elders of the Hashid and Baqil tribes, vowed in a Sana'a meeting to support the protests. The development came as at least six pro-democracy protesters were killed during clashes with security forces in Yemen cities on Friday. Friday's fatalities came after Yemeni officials said on Thursday that Saleh had ordered the country's security forces to protect protesters. The protesters have dubbed Friday "the beginning of the end" for Saleh's regime, which has been in power since 1978. The Yemeni ruler has described the pro-democracy protesters that call for his ouster as "elements of a coup." In a bid to contain the momentum of protests, Saleh announced that he would leave power after his term expires in 2013. He also promised not to hand over power to his son. He has also pledged to raise the wages of government employees and to provide 60,000 job opportunities for university graduates. However, the concessions seem not to have convinced the protesters, as the protests have intensified in recent days. Inspired by the revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia, protesters in several Arab and African states are demanding regime change in their countries.

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