Sanaa: Gulf mediators were awaiting a
"signal" from embattled Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to
revive their plan to end months of political unrest, an
opposition spokesman told agency.
"Secretary General Abdullatif al-Zayani of the Gulf
Cooperation Council (GCC) was expected in Sanaa on Monday, but
unfortunately he did not come," the spokesman said. "He
awaited a signal that did not materialise."
Political violence in the past three months has claimed
the lives of about 150 people in the poorest Arab country.
The GCC chief met with foreign ministers of the
six-member GCC on Sunday after returning empty handed from
Sanaa following Saleh`s refusal to sign the text of their
agreement to end the crisis.
The plan proposes the formation in Sanaa of a government
of national unity, Saleh transferring power to his vice
president and an end to the deadly protests rocking the
impoverished Arabian Peninsula nation since late January.
The president would submit his resignation to Parliament
within 30 days, to be followed two months later by a
However, a defiant Saleh, who has been in power for 32
years, has publicly insisted on sticking to the constitution
in any transfer of power, even though his ruling General
People`s Congress party has said it accepts the GCC plan.
The weekly Al-Mithaq, an organ of Saleh`s General
People`s Congress, said the opposition Common Forum should
stop sit-in protests, end defections in the army and ensure an
end to all violence.
The GCC plan had envisaged a peaceful transition.
"A peaceful transition of power does not mean that power
will fall to the opposition. Then it would amount to a coup,"
Abdallah Ghanem, spokesman for the ruling party said.
"It will be delivered to the people through elections in
accordance with the constitution."
The opposition disputes the position taken by the ruling
party after agreeing to abide by the Gulf initiative.
"The plan of the GCC does not ban sit-ins and
demonstrations," said chief opposition negotiator, Mohamed
Salem Basandoua, while addressing protesters camped at the
main square in Sanaa.
"In accepting this plan, the opposition has put the
government in to difficulty," said Basandoua added.