News / Middle East

    Yemen Cease-Fire Takes Hold Amid Deadly Unrest

    Anti-government protesters flee after security forces opened fire to disperse them in Sana'a,  September 19, 2011.
    Anti-government protesters flee after security forces opened fire to disperse them in Sana'a, September 19, 2011.

    An uneasy calm prevailed in the Yemeni capital late Tuesday after Vice President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi's negotiated cease-fire halted three days of clashes that have killed more than 70 people and wounded hundreds more.

    Both government forces and dissident troops vowed to stand by the truce. The dissident troops are loyal to Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar, a top general who defected to the opposition in March.

    Earlier Tuesday, at least 23 people were killed in Sana'a as the fighting intensified and spread to sensitive areas of the capital before the cease-fire took hold after nightfall. The clashes have forced thousands of civilians to flee Sana'a for the relative safety of rural areas.

    The United States Tuesday condemned the violence and called on all parties to exercise restraint.

    Yemen's youth-led protest movement stepped up demonstrations last week, angry after President Ali Abdullah Saleh instructed his deputy to negotiate a power-sharing deal. Many called the move the latest of the president's delaying tactics as he avoids demands to step down.

    Diplomats and Yemeni politicians are trying to revive a long-stalled transition plan under which Mr. Saleh would hand over power. U.N. envoy Jamal bin Omar and the secretary-general of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, Abdul Latif al-Zayan, arrived in Sana'a Monday to boost efforts to get the deal signed.

    Mr. Saleh has agreed to the GCC proposal three times since April. However, in each case, he has backed out before a deal could be signed. Yemen's president, in office for 33 years and a staunch U.S. ally, has clung to power despite tens of thousands demonstrating near daily since February to demand his ouster.

    State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland reiterated that Washington supports "the Yemeni people's aspirations for a peaceful, orderly transition."

    The U.S. has trained and equipped several elite Special Forces units within the pro-Saleh Republican Guards. Yemen is home to one of the world's most dangerous al-Qaida branches, whose militants have staged or inspired a series of attacks on U.S. territory.

    The chaos in the impoverished Gulf Arab nation already has allowed al-Qaida-linked militants to capture and hold a string of towns in Yemen's nearly lawless southern regions.

    The International Organization for Migration says Yemen's violence over the past few days has complicated efforts to evacuate several thousand mostly Ethiopian migrants who are stranded near the Saudi border with Yemen.

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

    Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
    and discuss them on our Facebook page.

    You May Like

    Escalation of Media Crackdown in Turkey Heightens Concerns

    Critics see 'a new dark age' as arrests of journalists, closures of media outlets by Erdogan government mount

    Russia Boasts of Troop Buildup on Flank, Draws Flak

    Russian military moves counter to efforts to de-escalate tensions, State Department says

    Video Iraqis Primed to March on Mosul, Foreign Minister Says

    Iraqi FM Ibrahim al-Jaafari tells VOA the campaign will meet optimistic expectations, even though US officials remain cautious

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Processi
    X
    Katherine Gypson
    July 27, 2016 6:21 PM
    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video A Life of Fighting Back: Hillary Clinton Shatters Glass Ceiling

    Hillary Clinton made history Thursday, overcoming personal and political setbacks to become the first woman to win the presidential nomination of a major U.S. political party. If she wins in November, she will go from “first lady” to U.S. Senator from New York, to Secretary of State, to “Madam President.” Polls show Clinton is both beloved and despised. White House Correspondent Cindy Saine takes a look at the life of the woman both supporters and detractors agree is a fighter for the ages.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video First Time Delegate’s First Day Frustrations

    With thousands of people filling the streets of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the 2016 Democratic National Convention, VOA’s Kane Farabaugh narrowed in on one delegate as she made her first trip to a national party convention. It was a day that was anything but routine for this United States military veteran.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora