Sunday, May 22, 2011

Yemen's Ruling Party inks GCC Deal

By Fatik Al-Rodaini

Sana'a, May 22, 2011- Yemen's ruling General People Congress party and its partners signed on Sunday on the GCC initiative to solve the current crisis in Yemen in the Presidential Palace.

The Yemeni T.V. said that the representatives of the ruling General People Congress party and its partners signed on the agreement.

The deal was signed by the GPC's second Vice President Abdul Karim Al-Iriyani and the GPC's assistant secretaries Sadiq Amin Abu Ra's, Ahmed Ibn Dagher and Amat Al-Razzaq Humad and NDAP's Chairman Qassim Sallam.

The initiative was signed in the presence of President Ali Abdullah Saleh, Prime Minister Ali Mujawar, GCC's Secretary General Abdullatif al-Zayani and ambassador of the United States Gerald Feierstein.

Earlier today, sources said President Ali Abdullah Saleh refused to sign a GCC-brokered power transfer deal which was signed by the opposition late on Saturday after it had been teetering for more than a month.

Informed sources said Saleh has sent his final word to the GCC Secretary General Abdul Latif Al-Zayani, who has been besieged along with foreign diplomats by Saleh's supporters at the UAE embassy in the capital since early today.

" Saleh told Al-Zayani he will not sign the deal, but no details were given," the sources said.

Earlier government and ruling party spokesmen said Saleh agreed to sign the deal if the opposition and Arab and western envoys would attend his signature inside the presidential palace.

The opposition strongly refused to go to the palace, saying they inked yesterday and accusing Saleh of continuous maneuvers.

Also, pro-Saleh crowds took to the streets in the capital Sana'a today, closing main roads, forcing shops to close and threatening to escalate their protest so that President Saleh does not sign the GCC deal, which was described by Saleh himself as a coup attempt.

"We will take the deal positively though we saw it as a mere coup scheme," Saleh said on Saturday in his address on Unification Day.

Abdul Janadi, deputy Information Minister, said the crowds were besieging Saleh while in the Police Academy to prevent him from signing and show support to his legitimacy.

The embattled president has backed out of signing three times, amid the continuous antigovernment protests in many cities and mounting external pressure on him to honor his word and start an immediate transfer of power.

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