Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Yemen Shias continue anti-govt. rally

Sana'a- Mar 8, 2011- Tens of thousands of the Shia Muslims based in the northern Yemen have repeated their protests against the government, braving prospects of government-ordered bloodshed.

The demonstrators took to the streets of several cities including Sa'ada, the capital city of a northern province of the same name, where the faith group is concentrated.

The minority, which has recently joined nationwide anti-government demonstrations, has for long complained about efforts by the Yemeni leadership and neighboring Saudi Arabia to socially, economically, and religiously marginalize the community.

The Shias have been subjected to numerous Sana'a-authorized armed offensives -- many carried out by Saudi forces and some reportedly by the United States.

The protesters on Monday voiced solidarity with the outraged public, who have been demanding the ouster of President Ali Abdullah Saleh's regime since January.

Saleh has already been in office for 33 years, with several opposition members arguing that his long-promised reforms have not materialized.

The country's opposition and religious figures have envisioned a roadmap for the ruler's departure before the end of this year.

The head of state has, however, said he would stay in power until the end of his term in 2013.

Dozens of people have been killed and hundreds more have been injured in Sana'a's crackdown on anti-regime protests.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a Houthi leader said that two protesters were killed and nine others were wounded during armed attacks by the government forces on the Shias' rallies on Friday.

Source: press TV

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