The Yemeni parliament has given preliminary approval to an extension of its own mandate as well as the president's, parliamentary sources said Thursday.
The bill, which has been sent to a parliamentary committee for further study, would extend the president's term from five to seven years and parliament members' from four to six years. The president would be eligible for re-election once.
The measure, which received the parliament's backing in principle Wednesday, also calls for a consultative council with 111 appointed members that would replace the current such body with its 59 seats.
The committee studying the bill was told to send it back to the full parliament in two months, the sources said.
An analyst said the proposed constitutional amendment would be "a setback for the democratic process and would weaken political forces, especially in the opposition's ranks."
The constitution was first amended in 1994, four years after the reunification of North and South Yemen - SANAA (AFP)
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