December 16, 2011
SANAA, Yemen (CNN) -- Two youth activists were killed in Taiz, in southern Yemen, after participating in a massive march Friday in opposition to the ruling family, a medical official said.
Dr. Sadeq al-Shujah, lead medic in Freedom Square Taiz, said the two youth activists were killed by central security soldiers dressed in civilian clothes as they were heading home after the march.
"The attacks did not happen during the march. The youth were heading home and were (a) target of the ruling family forces. The two dead bodies are now at the medical facility in the square," al-Shujah said.
He said they were shot on Jamal Street, near the square, and a Red Crescent ambulance brought them to the medical facility.
Al-Shujah told CNN that witnesses saw the shooter flee the scene of the attack in a government security vehicle.
Protests were reported Friday in 15 of the country's 21 provinces.
The largest was Taiz. Organizers told CNN that nearly a million people showed up in Freedom Square Taiz. The actual number on hand could not be confirmed.
The anti-government protesters named the protest the "Friday of Trialing," vowing to hold President Ali Abdullah Saleh accountable for the killing of what is alleged to be more than 1,000 youth activists since January.
Banners portraying Saleh as a criminal were raised, as well as some portraying him hanged.
"The criminal must be tried," youth activists repeatedly said in Sanaa and Taiz.
Saleh has agreed to transfer power into the hands of a new coalition government within 90 days. But that accord has not appeared to ease tensions.
"It's nowhere close to being over," said Abdul Haleem al-Magashi, the media officer in Freedom Square Taiz. "We have not achieved 10 percent of our goals. Yemen must be free, democratic and for the people before we consider ending our protests."
Other chants included "no immunity to the bloodthirsty Saleh," and "people want the the butcher behind bars."
Friday's protests were called for a day earlier by the organizing committee for the Yemen revolution, which also called for continuous escalation until the demands of the revolution are met in total.
"Saleh and his family still control the army and wealth of the country," said Khaled Anesi, a leading member of the revolutionary youth council. "Why is everyone thinking our revolution is over? When Saleh stands in front of a revolutionary court, then we can consider our revolution somewhat fruitful."