Yemen protesters demand quick regime change

AP News
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Posted: Jul 04, 2011 3:40 PM
Yemen protesters demand quick regime change

Hundreds of thousands rallied in Yemen's capital and several other major cities Monday, demanding the quick ouster of the country's president and criticizing proposals for a gradual transfer of power.

Saudi Arabia, backed by the U.S., has proposed that President Ali Abdullah Saleh step down within 30 days and hand power to his vice president. A national unity government would run the country until elections are held.

Saleh, who is being treated in Saudi Arabia for wounds sustained in an attack on his palace last month, has refused to endorse the deal.

Protest leaders told tens of thousands in Yemen's capital of Sanaa on Monday that such transition plans would only prolong Yemen's political crisis. They said they want quick change.

Meanwhile, a security official said that one person killed and three were wounded when Republican Guard forces shelled an area of the city of Taiz, targeting armed tribesmen. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to reporters.

Mahmoud Taha, a Taiz resident and activist, said that the shelling has been rattling several districts in Taiz, and that armed tribesmen responded by attacking several army vehicles.

Taiz is a hotbed of anti-government protests. Over the past weeks, tribesmen have been attacking government troops in the city, setting off frequent clashes.