Protests go on as car bomb kills five in Yemen

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The Independent Online

Tens of thousands of Yemenis protested in Sanaa in a "Friday of the Revolutionary Will" to underline their drive to oust their wounded president.

A car bomb killed five people in the southern port city of Aden, in the latest violence shaking Yemen, stuck in political limbo over President Ali Abdullah Saleh's refusal to quit, despite being hurt in an attack on his palace this month.

Mr Saleh, 69, recovering from his wounds in Saudi Arabia, has defied months of mass protests and pressure from the US and his Gulf neighbours for his departure. He has repeatedly refused to transfer power to his deputy under a Gulf-brokered plan aimed at preventing the impoverished country from sliding into civil war.

Four soldiers and a civilian were killed and 16 people, including 13 soldiers, were wounded in a powerful explosion in Aden's al-Mansoura district, medical sources and witnesses said.

A security source said the blast was caused by a car bomb at a military checkpoint. Residents said the explosion smashed the windows of a nearby hospital and rocked buildings in the area.

Earlier, security forces in Aden shot dead a demonstrator and wounded six others when they fired on a crowd at the funeral of a resident who died in prison, witnesses said.

The demonstrators had been displaying a large flag of the former south Yemen, which merged with north Yemen in 1990 – a sign of the separatist sentiment that had grown in the south even before the wave of popular protests against President Saleh's 33 years in power.