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(P)GCC Gave Saleh 30-Day License to Kill

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TEHRAN, April 30 (ICANA) – An analyst believes that by giving Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh 30 days to leave office, the (Persian) Gulf Cooperation Council has given him license to escape prosecution.
Saturday, April 30, 2011 11:33:23 AM
(P)GCC Gave Saleh 30-Day License to Kill

In an interview with Press TV, Yemeni freelance journalist Munir al-Mawari said Saleh is desperate to find a scapegoat for his crimes as looks to find refuge from the tactics employed by Saudi Arabia.

Q: I'd like to ask you about this plan which has come under threat by the opposition and even by President Saleh who said if any Qatar representatives were to attend the signing that he would not sign this document. Was this power transfer plan doomed from the day it was announced?

Al-Mawari: I agree that Saleh tries to buy time and create problems before solving the problem.

I think the (P)GCC countries made a big mistake in giving him 30 days in advance to commit a crime and then become immune from prosecution. He will do his best to make this initiative fail.

The only way for Saleh to test his credibility, the (P)GCC should tell him to do this now or tomorrow. If they give him one week or 30 days he will come up with a thousand reasons to make an excuse for not doing it. He will never resign under this initiative.

He will do whatever to engage this country in a civil war, to have a situation with statelessness, so no one can go after him or his assets. He knows how many crimes he has been committing during the last 33 years.

Q: Former Ambassador Mohamed Qubaty spoke about the (P)GCC needing to put further pressure on Mr. Saleh such as, for example, an asset freeze. Do you believe that there is a realistic chance that that will, in fact, occur?

It was said in reports that the Saudis were unhappy when Mubarak was overthrown, they were unhappy when Mubarak may be taken to trial. For the Saudis, who are very powerful within these Persian Gulf nations, would it be in their interests to further pressure Mr. Saleh?

Al-Mawari: Inside Saudi Arabia there are defenses and many positions of how to deal with the foreign policy of Saudi Arabia. I can assure that the Emir Nayef, who is the third man in Saudi Arabia, is against Saleh who told him about the war on terror. He is eager to get rid of Saleh.

But King Abdullah is supporting Saleh and doesn't want to get rid of him because as the king of Saudi Arabia he doesn't like to see the revolution succeed in the area. King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia is the one who is hosting Zain El Abidin Bin Ali, he offered a lot of money to the Egyptian army to save Mubarak.

Saudi Arabia supported Mubarak against the Egyptian people. We don't think that Saudi Arabia will do anything good for the Yemeni people. They will support Saleh and try to save him from his faith and do whatever they can to have immunity for Saleh. But the best immunity for Saleh, if they are serious about that, is to take him to Saudi Arabia and give him practical immunity.

The legal immunity that they are taking in Yemen is not going to work because today, April 27th, is the day that the Yemeni parliament will expire. They dissolved legitimacy. Even if the Yemeni parliament gives Saleh immunity, this is not going to be legal. The coming parliament will reverse that.

Saleh knows how many crimes he committed during his terms, so he knows that the Yemeni people, even without a government, will go up to him and prosecute him.

Q: The Ambassador mentioned the United States and its role in all of this, and the fact that it is silent.

It's being said that for many Yemenis the US military assistance has become synonymous with the lack of political freedom considering Saleh's regime realized that if they kept speaking about al-Qaeda the US would give them more aid and, essentially, they'd become more wealthier. Do you feel that the US, now that it has stayed longer itself in the Arabian Peninsula, will be willing to side with the protesters?

Al-Mawari: Well, it has already changed its positions and stopped military aid for Saleh in February. They announced that publically.

The US is a super power that cares about its interests. They're not going to side with Saleh as an individual against its own interests. It's not about principles or ethics, it's about strategic interests.

That's why the United States is pushing hard to convince Saleh to step down. This guy is a snake and knows how to dance among the head of the snakes. He used to do that on the domestic level but now he is doing that on the regional and international level by using Saudi Arabia against Doha (Qatar), mentioning Qatar against Saudi Arabia, and giving an excuse to use Russia and China against the United States.

He is playing among hard and big snakes and that's why I expect that he is going to lose very soon because no one is willing to risk their interests for Saleh.

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