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Saleh Trying to Push Yemen into Chaos

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TEHRAN, May 22 (ICANA) – A former Yemeni official says Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has been trying to push the country into a state of chaos by rejecting to give up power.
Sunday, May 22, 2011 12:48:53 PM
Saleh Trying to Push Yemen into Chaos

Press TV has conducted an interview with Mohamed Qubaty, a former adviser to Yemen's prime minister, to get his views on Saleh's failure to cede power.

Q: Why is Saleh rejecting the Arab deal, although it offers him immunity from prosecution?

Qubaty: I think from the beginning Saleh has been trying to avoid giving up power. He's been playing these games of procrastination and maneuvering until today. As his speech has shown today, it is obvious that he does not take the [P]GCC serious.

Today in his speech he completely ignored the [P]GCC. He came up with the proposal of early elections, which is a joke. No one agrees with that. We know that we don't have a higher election committee, and that the people are speaking of a parliamentary system, they're not looking towards presidential elections. So I think the [P]GCC needs to pressure Saleh to leave because he's pushing the area into dangerous waters.

Q: How would you assess that the western-backed Arab initiative aims at prolonging Saleh to stay in power, how some would argue. But if they believe that Saleh has to go in the end, why would they try and save him from prosecution or broker talks between him and the opposition?

Qubaty: I think the deal stood from the beginning that he leaves the country, and that for his departure he will be given immunity from prosecution. But the West knows that this immunity does not actually stand in front of any court. So he's got only a practical immunity, not a legal one.

Practical means that he must move to any one of the [P]GCC countries, where he cannot be extradited for his crimes and funds he has embezzled from the country. If he moves anywhere, the immunity does not stand especially in Europe or the US. After weeks of efforts, I think it's time for some action, because it is hurting the interests of the region. I think Saleh is driving the country towards a state of anarchy.

Q: What kind of a solution do you think Saleh's western and Arab allies would want and is there an effort to influence the transition process?

Qubaty: For the past seven weeks he has been using his ploys, trying to bend in front of this storm. He doesn't want to leave; he's looking for excuses. Apart from this, he's trying to make the world at large, think that he's busy setting up a stage whereby things would be better, I think on the contrary.

Ali Abdullah Saleh doesn't control beyond 12 kilometers around his palace. His plans are to push the country into a state of chaos and anarchy, whereby he will disappear and there will not be any legitimate or credible power or authority which could hold him accountable for his crimes and embezzlements. So he's working on a scenario, he's not working on the interests of the world. He is working towards his own benefits.

The West and the so-called friends of Yemen had been involved prior to the uprising, for the past at least 12 months and they've called for international dialogue. And to know that sort of international and national dialogue was leading to some sort of conference by people would agree to a transition period on Yemeni democracy, perhaps the federal states, and moving towards a revolution. All the issues are there.

Without addressing these issues properly, the post-Saleh time in Yemen will be quite turbulent. And this is part of the flaws in the [P]GCC initiative, because it never dealt with those issues. It only dealt with part of the opposition in the south, the Houthis. By large it has ignored the need of a dialogue between everyone after Saleh, in regards to the country's future, to set up the stage for a democratic and civilian government.

Q: With the dire economical situation in Yemen, with the security crisis that we're hearing of, in your opinion where is the revolution heading after Saleh?

Qubaty: I think the situation is quite grave. We always sort of forget about the economical situation in the country.

There is a shortage of foods stuff like oil, sugar, and flour. We've got a lot of difficulty with electricity, with the capital of Sana'a having 12 up to 15 hours of black-outs a day. There is not enough fuel for cars. So the whole situation is very grave. As I said Saleh is only trying to push the country into a state of chaos, because he knows if a credible government comes into power, it will track him down.

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