Yemen: President 'to step down' to secure peaceful transition
Sunday 27 March 2011
A deal on a peaceful transition of power in Yemen is imminent and will be based on an offer by President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down by the end of the year, the Foreign Minister, Abu Bakr al-Qirbi, said yesterday.
Yemen, which has become a base for a small but resurgent arm of al-Qa'ida, has been in turmoil since January when the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions sparked popular demonstrations to end Mr Saleh's 32-year authoritarian rule.
Mr Saleh, who oversaw the 1990 unification of north and south Yemen and was victorious in a civil war four years later, yesterday told tribes in Sanaa that he would "work to avoid bloodshed using all possible means". He had said on Friday he was ready to relinquish power to "safe hands" after weeks of street demonstrations demanding his departure.
The transition discussions centre on the time frame of a handover, among other issues.
Mr Saleh had earlier responded to mass protests with a violent crackdown and a string of concessions, all rebuffed by opposition parties. The concessions included a transfer of power after a new constitution had been drafted and parliamentary and presidential elections by the end of the year.
The protests turned bloody last Friday when snipers loyal to Mr Saleh fired into an anti-government crowd, killing 52 people. That led to a string of defections, including military commanders such as General Ali Mohsen, as well as ambassadors, provincial governors and tribal leaders, some from his own tribe, that badly eroded Mr Saleh's position.
Germanwings captain Patrick Sondenheimer tried to break into locked cockpit door 'with an axe' as plane was descending
Amanda Knox murder conviction: Italian court overturns verdict for US student and Raffaele Sollecito in the killing of Meredith Kercher
Saudi Arabia says it won't rule out building nuclear weapons
The battle for the Middle East's future begins in Yemen as Saudi Arabia jumps into the abyss
#FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 1 Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with 'topics' as country reforms its education system
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Does earning a 6 figu...
£18000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A challenging opportunity for a...