Yemen Celebrates as Saleh Leaves for Medical Treatment
Yemen’s President Ali Abdullah Saleh, nursing wounds from a rocket attack Friday on the presidential mosque, arrived in Saudi Arabia on Sunday for medical treatment as street celebrations and renewed violence erupted back home in the capital of Sanaa.
Those who oppose Saleh are demanding democratic elections and an end to his three-decade rule. Western analysts speculate that Saleh is unlikely to return to Yemen after treatment. In the meantime, Maj. Gen. Abd al-Rahman Mansur al-Hadi is serving as acting president while questions remain as to which groups could rush to fill the political vacuum. –ARK
’TIS THE REASON…
President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s authoritarian grip on Yemen appeared to be slipping as he arrived in Saudi Arabia for medical treatment for wounds suffered in a rocket attack on his compound.
… Saleh delivered an audio address on television to reassure supporters, but his voice sounded laboured and the address was made accompanied by an old photograph of him on the screen.
… A leaderless Yemen would place enormous pressure on Saudi Arabia, which has long played the role of kingmaker for its much smaller, and infinitely poorer, neighbour.
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