2 killed in clashes during protests in south Yemen

Security forces fired tear gas at hundreds of anti-government protesters in south Yemen, killing two demonstrators, a medical official and witnesses said.

Last Updated: Mar 03, 2011, 11:52 AM IST

Sanna (Yemen): Security forces fired tear
gas at hundreds of anti-government protesters in south Yemen,
killing two demonstrators, a medical official and witnesses
said.

The deaths occurred during protests in the town of
Sadr in Lahaj province, yesterday, a hospital official said,
speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not
authorized to brief the media.
Witnesses said security forces fired tear gas to
disperse the protesters, who responded by setting three of
police vehicles on fire.

Violence also erupted during demonstrations in the Red
Sea city of Hodeida, where protesters clashed with government
supporters and security forces in a battle that included
sticks and rocks. Thirteen demonstrators were injured, medical
officials said.

Yemen has seen large protests in recent weeks
demanding the ouster of longtime President Ali Abdullah Saleh,
a weak but important US ally in the fight against al-Qaida.
Key tribal allies of Saleh have also joined the protests.

Saleh spoke with the US homeland security adviser by
telephone yesterday and expressed his regret for any
misunderstanding caused by his public accusations a day
earlier that the US and Israel are behind the unrest
threatening his 32-year rule, the White House said.
During the call with John Brennan, Saleh also
reaffirmed his commitment to meaningful political reform.

Thousands of people have been demonstrating across the Middle
Eastern country in support of democratic change and Saleh`s
ouster.

Brennan responded that comments that seek to lay blame
for recent developments in the region are unhelpful.

On Tuesday, Saleh accused President Barack Obama of
meddling in the affairs of Arab countries, and asked whether
Obama is president of the United States or president of the
Arab world.

PTI