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Yemen president warns of civil war, U.S. concerned
Reuters via MSNBC ^ | 3/22/2011 | Cynthia Johnston and Mohamed Ghobari

Posted on 03/22/2011 7:52:01 AM PDT by Qbert

SANAA — Yemen's president warned on Tuesday that his country would descend into civil war if he is forced to quit and Washington voiced concern about instability in the Arabian state where al Qaeda has a stronghold.

Unrelenting anti-government protests, which first began on February 3, and fresh defections among the ruling elite have added to the pressure on Saleh, a U.S. ally against radical Islamists, to step down immediately after 32 years in power.

But an aide said the president would leave office only after organizing parliamentary polls by January 2012 and he refused to hand over power without knowing who would succeed him.

"President Ali Abdullah Saleh said he will hand over power through (parliamentary) elections and the formation of democratic institutions at the end of 2011 or January 2012," Saleh's media secretary Ahmed al-Sufi told Reuters.

"Ali Abdullah Saleh does not seek power. Ali Abdullah Saleh will not leave without knowing who he is handing over to."

Defense Secretary Robert Gates voiced rare public alarm about the situation in Yemen: "We are obviously concerned about the instability in Yemen." He added that he was mainly anxious to avoid "diversion of attention" from opposing al Qaeda there.

(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; robertgates; yemen
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To: Sarabaracuda
Not another blame-America-first DUmmy.

Me? Explain and justify. Details please.

41 posted on 03/24/2011 12:23:15 PM PDT by Captain Kirk
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]


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