April 28, 2011
At least one separatist gunman and two soldiers were killed and dozens others from both sides injured in clashes between the army forces and separatist groups in Yemen's southern port city of Aden on Wednesday, a provincial security official said.
Armed clashes broke out in al-Arish district, eastern Aden, between separatist gunmen who blocked roads with burning tires and tried to enforce a civil disobedience and military forces, killing two soldiers.
One separatist gunman was also shot dead, the official told Xinhua, who asked to remain anonymous.
"Those armed men do not demand the departure of the president by peaceful ways, they call for separation," Najeeb Saleh, a youth activist said.
Local residents said gunshots and heavy fire could still be heard in al-Arih area.
Yemen's northern and southern parts were unified in 1990 according to a deal between the People's General Congress and the Yemeni Socialist Party. However, the deal fell apart, leading to a crisis between the two allies, which developed into a civil war in 1994.
Nowadays, voices rise in south Yemen where secessionist sentiments are simmering, calling for disengagement from the north and the restoration of the southern state.
Yemen has faced political crisis ignited by opposition-backed street protests since mid February, which undermined the security and stability of the country.