Gunmen kidnap Italian embassy's security chief


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The Independent Online

Gunmen kidnapped an Italian diplomat yesterday while, in a separate incident, some 100 armed tribesmen loyal to the former President, Ali Abdullah Saleh, stormed the Interior Ministry, demanding to be enlisted in the police force.

Both incidents highlight the continuing turmoil in Yemen despite a peace deal under which Mr Saleh, pictured, stood down after months of protests and was replaced in February by his deputy.

The Italian diplomat was near the embassy building when a car drove in and its occupants took him by force. It is not known where the men took the diplomat, who was responsible for security .

Earlier, tribesmen briefly held Interior Ministry staff hostage. They freed them a few hours later but continued to occupy the building. A ministry official said the tribesmen were Saleh loyalists, who were promised they would be enrolled in the police force in return for helping tackle last year's uprising. The promise has not been fulfilled.