Thursday, 29 September 2011

Yemenis protest again, tribesmen shoot down plane

Tens of thousands of Yemenis protested in Sana'a on Wednesday at President Ali Abdullah Saleh's return from Saudi Arabia, while opposition tribesmen said they had downed a warplane outside the capital and captured its pilot.
Waving flags and making peace signs, protesters fearing renewed stalemate after months of demonstrations seeking Saleh's removal marched out of "Change Square" shouting "Death, death."
"The point is, if we can't live a decent and dignified life, we'd rather die," said Khaled al-Mandi.
Saleh's return has infuriated many Yemenis who thought they had seen the last of him when an attempt on his life in June forced him to fly to neighboring Saudi Arabia for medical treatment, but he defied the odds on Friday by landing in Sana'a "carrying the dove of peace and the olive branch."
"We don't accept any political deals. After all the bloodshed, that option is gone," said Hazim, a 21-year-old protester.

"We are struggling to survive, but the Yemeni people are like the ocean and you can't fight the ocean," he said.
Salah Sharfi, a student, said he was ready to die for the sake of future generations. "We don't want to die, but if we must to make the country free, we will not hesitate." He had turned off his phone so his mother would not know where he was.
Outside Sana'a, tribesmen shot down a warplane and captured its pilot in the mountainous region of Naham, where the air force was bombing armed opposition tribesmen, a tribal source said.
A military official said the plane, a Russian-made Sukhoi fighter, had been downed while conducting a routine mission.
The tribal source said tribesmen had attacked the plane with anti-aircraft weapons and detained the pilot who had survived.
Earlier this week an army general and three tribesmen were killed in fighting at a military base in Naham.

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