Friday, 3 June 2011

Deadly clashes in Sana'a continue

There seems to be no end in sight for the deadly clashes between forces loyal to President Ali Abdullah Saleh and tribal fighters. Last night, the fighting intensified in Sana'a as tribal fighters reportedly tried to force their way through government lines north of the city.

It is estimated that at least 135 people have been killed in the last 10 days during heavy armed battles between the two sides. Yesterday, the fighting got worse as security forces fired live bullets at people protesting against Saleh's three decade rule.

Fighting near the capital's airport briefly grounded flights. State television showed the Yemeni Airways building on fire and heavily damaged government offices, which had been taken back by the forces.

The country is split between Saleh's loyalist in the south and tribesmen and renegade military units in the north. There a fears that the situation is getting out of control and could potential lead to a civil war.

The protests against Saleh's rule intensified after the president reneged on a deal brokered by the Gulf Arab states to secure a peaceful end to his time in office. Late on Thursday 2nd May, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), whose power transition plan Saleh refused to sign three times, said it would continue its efforts towards a "peaceful solution".

Sources: BBC News, Sky News, Bloomberg

For more news and expert analysis about Yemen, please see Yemen Focus.

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