Thursday, 10 June 2010

Ten wounded in south Yemen

Source: AFP, 10/06/2010

Ten people were wounded when security forces opened fire on demonstrators in the south Yemen town of Daleh on Thursday, security officials and sources from the Southern Movement told AFP.

"Seven people were wounded in a demonstration in Daleh," when police opened fire to disperse a protest calling for the release of prisoners, a security official told AFP.

Three more protesters were hurt when army forces opened fire as they tried to regroup, according to the Southern Movement -- a coalition of groups seeking greater autonomy or independence for south Yemen.

Southern Movement leader Yahya Ghalib al-Shuaybi said the demonstrators were protesting the deaths Monday of five civilians, whom witnesses said were killed in government shelling on the southern town of Daleh.

"Demonstrations of anger and solidarity with the victims of Daleh... were launched across several of the southern regions, especially in Daleh, Habilayn, Abyan, Shabwa, and Yafe," Shuaybi told AFP.

"Military forces in the blockaded city (Daleh) fired from posts surrounding the city, using light weapons," Shuaybi said.

The demonstrators were carrying flags of the formerly independent south along with pictures of prominent exiled south Yemeni leader Ali Salem al-Baid, Shuaybi said.

On Tuesday Baid appealed to the international community to protect southerners "from the massacre committed against southerners in general and Daleh inhabitants specifically," in a statement received by AFP in Dubai.

A soldier was also killed on Monday and 17 people were wounded in the unrest in Daleh.

South Yemen was independent from the British withdrawal in 1967 until it united with the north in 1990. The south seceded in 1994, sparking a short civil war that ended with the region overrun by northern troops.

Residents of the south, who complain of discrimination by the Sanaa government in the allocation of resources, hold frequent protests, which periodically result in clashes.

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