Symbolic presidential vote in Yemen amid boycott in south, north
Yemenis began on Tuesday to vote for the election of a new president, by virtue of an agreement on the departure of Ali Abdullah Saleh, who has been in power for over 33 years. This is a symbolic vote as the only candidate is the Vice President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi , who is supported by most political forces.
In Sana'a, in the University District, , separated queues of men and women were formed before the opening of the voting station at eight o'clock. "We were surprised to find that there was a great influx of women even before the polls open" , said the director of the polling station, Abir Al-Afifi .
In Aden, the main city in southern Yemen, the crowd was low. The situation in the city is tense, as the Southern Movement, which demands autonomy, having called for a boycott of the poll and its radical wing, seeking independence for the south, having proclaimed Tuesday a day of "civil disobedience" . One person was wounded at dawn when unidentified gunmen opened fire on a polling station in the district of Dar Saad , said a security official. The army responded to the sources of fire and a passerby was injured, he said.
Over 12 million voters are eligible to vote in this election boycotted also by Shiite rebels in the north.