More clashes break out in Sana’a

Yemeni protestors block a road during clashes with security forces in the southern city of Taizz on June 4, 2011.
More clashes between Yemeni government troops and opposition tribesmen have broken out in Sana’a, one day after an attack on President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s palace.

Government troops also shelled the residence of tribal leader Sadiq al-Ahmar in the capital on Saturday, apparently in retaliation for Friday’s attack on the presidential palace.

In the incident, the embattled president and six other Yemeni officials, including Prime Minister Ali Mohammed Mujawar and Parliament Speaker Yahya al-Raiee, were injured, and at least seven presidential guards were killed.

The government said the al-Ahmar family was behind the attack.

Some of the high-ranking officials who were injured were flown to Saudi Arabia for medical treatment.

A Yemeni official told Reuters on Saturday that Saleh had suffered minor injuries to his head and face but was still inside the country. Other reports said he suffered serious burns and shrapnel wounds in the chest and neck.

Saudi officials say he is receiving treatment in the kingdom.

“I am well, in good health,” Saleh said in an audio statement broadcast on state television late on Friday.

Reports from Sana’a on Saturday indicated that fighting had also spread to the southern part of the capital for the first time and that thousands of opposition tribesmen were making their way to Sana’a to join the battle against Saleh loyalists.

Meanwhile, Yemeni police and military units have withdrawn from the southern city of Taizz as regime thugs are reportedly looting shops and public buildings in the city.

Hundreds of thousands of people have turned out for regular demonstrations in Yemen’s major cities since late January, calling for an end to corruption and unemployment and demanding the ouster of President Saleh, who has been in office since 1978.


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