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Six foreigners killed in Yemen; Basindwa to form new govt

[ 2011-11-29 15:24]     字号 [] [] []  
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Unrest continued to plague Yemen with violence between Shiite rebels and Sunni Islamists killing at least 25 people in the north - including six foreign citizens, according to the Sunni side.

Moreover, dozens were wounded in northern Yemen in what Sunni Islamist Salafi fighters said was shelling by Shiite Muslim Houthi rebels on Saturday and Sunday.

The shelling killed 10 people on Saturday and continued on Sunday afternoon, a Salafi spokesman said, raising the death toll and injuring a further 48 wounded in Damaj, about 150 km north of the capital Sanaa. The defense ministry put the death toll at 32.

The representative of the Salafis, who identified himself as Abu Ismail, said six foreign nationals - from the United States, Indonesia, Malaysia and Russia - were among the dead after shells hit a religious school in Saada province, which lies in Yemen's northwest and borders Saudi Arabia.

The Houthis, who effectively control Saada, are deeply wary of Saudi Arabia's promotion of puritanical Sunni Salafi creeds that class Shi'ites as heretics.

Dayfallah al-Shami, a member of the Houthis' political office, told Reuters that Houthi leader Abdelmalek al-Houthi had issued orders for a cease-fire but the Salafis had rejected it and fought on.

The conflict in the north, where government troops also tried to crush the Houthi rebels before a cease-fire last year, is one of several plaguing Yemen.

Also on Sunday, Vice-President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi named as premier Mohammed Basindwa, a foreign minister from 1993 to 1994 who later joined the opposition, the state news agency Saba said.

Basindwa is to form a new government under the deal signed in Riyadh last Wednesday when President Ali Abdullah Saleh transferred his powers to his deputy.

On Saturday Hadi also called early presidential elections for Feb 21 under the agreement with the opposition to resolve the crisis resulting from 10 months of pro-democracy demonstrations.

If the agreement, sponsored by the Gulf states, goes according to plan, Saleh will become the fourth Arab ruler brought down by mass demonstrations that have reshaped the political landscape of the Middle East.

(中国日报网英语点津 Rosy 编辑)

Six foreigners killed in Yemen; Basindwa to form new govt

About the broadcaster:

Six foreigners killed in Yemen; Basindwa to form new govt

Lee Hannon is Chief Editor at China Daily with 15-years experience in print and broadcast journalism. Born in England, Lee has traveled extensively around the world as a journalist including four years as a senior editor in Los Angeles. He now lives in Beijing and is happy to move to China and join the China Daily team.