Riots continue for 5th day in southern Yemen
Four Yemenis were injured and 40 demonstrators were arrested as clashes between protesters and the army in the country's south continued Thursday into their fifth day, a parliament member and security officials said. According to the AP, lawmaker Nasser Mohammed Thabet said soldiers and security forces have been firing live bullets and using tear gas to disperse demonstrators in the southern Lahaj province.
Security officials confirmed the casualties and the arrests. At least 120 people were arrested over the last four days.
The protesters are demanding the release of all the demonstrators taken into custody since the rioting started Sunday, as well as the withdrawal of the army and police that deployed with heavy army armor in several areas in the south.
In Tora al-Baha town, also in Lahaj province, the AP said angry people stormed a security detention building and set free one of the activist after clashes with security forces where another Yemeni was hurt. The situation in other towns, including al-Hablain which saw heavy clashes Wednesday that resulted in the death of one protester, was tense and most of the shops were closed in fear of more eruptions.
Wednesday's death was the first since clashes broke out between security forces and thousands of former southern Yemen army officers, political activists and unemployed young men who accuse Yemeni authorities in the north of unequal treatment.
However, Yemen's interior ministry has denied that a person has been killed and the alleged attack on the headquarters of the General People Congress during the riots in Tora al-Baha townon Wednesday. A source in the ministry said that some "sabotage elements" have assaulted a number of "innocent employees" and lootied shops in the town.