Yemen opposition declares week of wider riots to oust president

Opposition in Yemen has announced it would start a week of decisive actions seeking to oust President Ali Abdullah Saleh, Al-Jazeera said on Saturday.

From 140 to 300 people are estimated to have been killed in Yemen’s nationwide protests against the unpopular president Ali Abdullah Saleh, which have been ongoing since late January.

A member of the Yemeni opposition movement, Vasim al-Karashi, said civil unrest would be intensified across the country and “opposition parties will organize thousands of people into a march of protest toward the presidential palace in Sanaa, the capital, to demand the president’s immediate resignation.”

“The march has been coordinated with all the revolutionary factions, now it only remains to choose the date,” he said.

The ruling party, General People’s Congress, said about 180,000 Saleh supporters would soon be summoned to the capital from all over the country to guard the presidential palace against the opposition march.

Anti-government protests against 33-year leader Saleh have been in full swing for nearly four months. Government forces have used arms to dispel protesters. Western media have cited a death toll of at least 140.

The ruling party earlier approved an Arab-mediated national reconciliation deal, according to which Saleh was to resign within 30 days and hand power to the national unity government. The opposition criticized the deal for giving the president and his close relatives immunity from prosecution.

On May 6, opposition forces rejected the deal after Saleh refused to sign it personally.

MOSCOW, May 14 (RIA Novosti)

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