Feb 11, 2012
Sana'a - The European Union is to provide 7 million euros (9.2 million dollars) for supporting presidential elections in Yemen that are set for February 21, the bloc's officials said Saturday.
'The elections will provide an opportunity for the Yemeni people to vote for a new Yemen and to express their support to the peaceful transfer of power and the political transition process,' the EU delegation in Yemen said in a statement.
The bloc is to mobilize an electoral expert mission to provide a comprehensive assessment of the electoral process, according to the statement.
The election is part of a United Nations-sponsored deal signed in November by the outgoing president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, and the opposition for a peaceful transfer of power.
The deal grants Saleh, who has ruled Yemen for 33 years, immunity in return for his relinquishing power.
The parliament unanimously nominated Vice President Abd Rabbu Mansur Hadi as the sole presidential candidate in the elections.
The early vote aims to end a year of anti-Saleh demonstrations and the unrest in the impoverished Arabian Peninsula country.