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5 protesters died for supporting Yemen President regime

 A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...
 A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...
 A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...
 A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...
 A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...

Mideast Yemen

A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...

Mideast Yemen

A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...

Mideast Yemen

A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...

Mideast Yemen

A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...

Mideast Yemen

A wounded protestor is carried from the site of clashes with security forces in Sanaa, Yemen, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2011. A medic at a field hospital in...

5 supporters of Yemen's authoritarian president died in protests, despite an agreement signed a day earlier by President Ali Abdullah Saleh, immediately transferring regime to his vice president and raising hopes for an end to a political crisis that brought this impoverished nation to the brink of collapse.

The agreement makes President Ali Abdullah Saleh's 33-year rule end in only the shallowest of changes at the top of the regime, something the U.S. administration likely favored to preserve a fragile alliance against one of the world's most active al-Qaida branches based in Yemen.

The plan drawn up by Yemen's oil-rich Gulf neighbors does not directly change the system Saleh put in place over three decades to serve his interests.

"It gives an opportunity for regime survival," said Yemen expert Ibrahim Sharqieh at the Brookings Doha Center. "The only one we've seen changing here is the president, but the state institutions and everything else remain in place. Nothing else has changed."

Saleh signed the agreement Wednesday in the Saudi capital Riyadh, transferring power to his vice president within 30 days. If it holds, he will be the fourth dictator pushed from power this year by the Arab Spring uprisings.

But the deal leaves much more of the old regime intact than the uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya -- something that will almost certainly translate into continued unrest. Protesters who have been in the millions for nearly 10 months were out again Thursday, rejecting a provision that gives Saleh immunity from prosecution.

Throughout his rule, Saleh consolidated power through wily tactics that included exploiting tribal and regional rivalries and putting close relatives and confidantes in key security positions. For years, he accepted funds from the West to fight Islamist militants, then turned around and used some of those militants to help fight his enemies.

Ruling party and opposition members say Saleh signed the deal under heavy pressure from the U.S. and Saudi governments and that he feared possible sanctions against him and his family, who are suspected of having huge fortunes stashed in foreign banks. Some doubt that the deal marks the end of political life for the president, who has proved to be a wily politician and suggested in remarks after the signing ceremony that he could play a future political role in the country, along with his ruling party.

Yemen is the poorest country in the Arab world and even before the uprising, the government exerted only weak authority over most of the country. The uprising led to a collapse in security that created a vacuum al-Qaida militants exploited to gain a firmer foothold in the country. The militants even seized some territory in the south.

The deal ensures that Saleh's party will play a large role in the country's future. More importantly, it does not mention Saleh's son, Ahmed, who commands the elite Republican Guard, or his other relatives and associates who command security forces. These units are often the enforcers of Saleh's regime and could remain more loyal to him and his associates than to a new coalition government.
Under the plan, the new government will also appoint a committee to "restructure" the security forces, including the army, the police and the intelligence services. But it remains unclear what powers it will have to push through its suggested reforms.

Inside Yemen, many of the protesters who have braved lethal government crackdowns to demonstrate for democratic reforms rejected the deal.


Updated : 2021-05-11 20:40 GMT+08:00