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Yemen Fires Former President's Half-Brother in Military Shake-Up

Loyalists to a Yemeni military chief who was fired by President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi forced officials to close the main airport on Saturday, after the loyalists threatened to shoot down planes.

Officials say air force officers and other gunmen surrounded the Sana'a airport and shut down flights after the president sacked Air Force chief Mohammed Saleh al-Ahmar, a half-brother of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh. Ahmar had refused to resign.

The president removed the air force chief, four governors and more than a dozen military officers in a government shake-up on Friday that appeared to be an effort to remove some of Mr. Saleh's loyalists from key posts.

The Yemeni government has been trying to recover from anti-government protests that resulted in Mr. Saleh's resignation.

However, the shakeup did not affect the former president's son, Ali Abdullah Saleh, who retained command of the Republican Guard, or a nephew, Mohammed Abdullah Saleh, who kept his job as the head of the Central Security Forces.

Mr. Hadi had served as Mr. Saleh's deputy. He took over as president in February. Mr. Hadi has vowed to fight al-Qaida and stabilize the country.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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