Monday, March 14, 2011

Zenawi: Yemen unrest could boost al-Qaeda and al Shabaab

By: Abdalle Ahmed

Addis Ababa, Mar 14, 2011- Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Meles Zenawi said on Sunday that the escalation of unrest in Yemen could boost al-Qaeda and its Somali rebels of al Shabaab.

Three people were killed and hundreds injured on Saturday in one of the most violent clashes between Yemeni police and anti-government protesters since the start of the popular demonstrations in Yemen since January.

A wave of protests inspired while Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh who was ruling the country 32 years rejected calls step down from power in Yemen.

If the demonstrations in Yemen have led to some kind of breakdown of law and order, it may give a base stationed by Al-Qaeda and Shabab, there a good chance to expand”, Meles Zenawi said at a news conference in Addis Ababa.

The prime minister of Ethiopia called the United States, which is considered as a key ally to intervene the increasing number of dead and called for calm, warning that Yemen could see the same fate as seen in Libya unless there is dialogue between the people and president Saleh’s regime.

If there is no control then the current demonstrations could lead to a political vacuum and a potential failed state in Yemen. This will be a significant security risk for all of us in the Horn of Africa.” He added.

Meles Zenawi, who rules Ethiopia since 1985 has already dismissed chances of an uprising like those seen in African countries could happen in Ethiopia as many of Ethiopian politicians see his regime ‘one of Africa’s dictators’.

With the exception of Djibouti, the horn of Africa region has not yet witnessed the uprising that spread across North Africa and the Middle East to the African countries.

Source: RBC Radio

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