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Monday, May 23, 2011

Yemen Peace Deal Fails As Saleh Backs Out

Ministers from the Gulf Cooperation Council have suspended mediation efforts in Yemen, after the country's president failed to sign a transition deal for him to leave office.

They made the decision after President Ali Abdullah Saleh refused to sign an agreement to step down, the third time such a deal has fallen through.

Mr Saleh said al Qaeda militants could fill a political and security vacuum if he is forced out and blamed the opposition for the deal's collapse.

Yemeni state TV showed several top figures from the country's ruling party signing the accord as the president and American ambassador watched.
But Mr Saleh said he would not sign unless opposition leaders came to the palace and signed it as well in public, not "behind closed doors".
"If (Yemen) is engulfed in a civil war, they will be responsible for it and the bloodshed," he said in a televised speech.
The deal would have given Mr Saleh immunity from prosecution, ensuring a dignified exit after nearly 33 years in power.
If he had signed it, he would have become the third Arab leader ousted by popular protests since January.
Hundreds of thousands of people have defied a bloody crackdown and called for the president to quit.
Protesters in Sanaa
Anti-government protesters in the capital Sanaa
The US and Saudi Arabia, both targets of foiled attacks by al Qaeda's Yemen-based regional wing, are keen to end the Yemeni stalemate and avert a spread of anarchy that could give the global militant network more room to operate.
The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) bloc of Yemen's oil-rich neighbours and Western powers have exerted intense diplomatic efforts to secure a deal and end the violence in which more than 170 Yemeni demonstrators have been killed.
Last week President Barack Obama said that Mr Saleh needed to "follow through on his commitment to transfer power". European diplomats have also leaned on both sides to agree on a deal.
But in a move likely to infuriate the Gulf and Western countries, gunmen loyal to Mr Saleh surrounded the United Arab Emirates embassy on Sunday, trapping inside Gulf and Western ambassadors working to resolve the crisis and preventing them from going to the presidential palace to see the president.
The UAE urged Yemeni authorities to secure its embassy, and the diplomats were later reported to have been taken to the palace by helicopter.


  1. Very interesting! I learned something!

  2. would not like to be at that place, just 2 many ppl

  3. You should post trivia facts daily, that'd be a cool idea for posts, even if they're kinda small. Just random idea :P


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