Death toll of Yemen's capital protest clashes rises to 3: medics

13:30, April 21, 2011      

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Death toll from Yemen's Tuesday clashes between police and anti-government protesters in the capital rose to three after a seriously injured protester died early Wednesday, medics and protest organizers said.

One of the protest organizers told Xinhua that they captured 10 policemen who were among the forces that shot bullets on protesters near the Foreign Ministry's building on Tuesday.

About 50 protesters were hit by police gunshots, seven of them were still in critical conditions and hundreds others suffered from suffocation due to the effects of tear gas.

Elsewhere in Yemen's western province of Al-Hodayda, dozens of protesters were wounded in clashes with riot policemen late on Tuesday.

Protest organizers said they planned the massive marches on Wednesday across major provinces to protest against Tuesday's killing of three protesters in Sanaa and one passer-by in Taiz.

They complained against authorities' excessive crackdowns on their peaceful marches that demand an immediate end to the 33-year rule of President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

They said southern provinces of Taiz and Aden are due to witness a full-scale civil disobedience on Wednesday to "attract the attention of mediators of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) foreign ministers in Abu Dhabi and the international community to press for Saleh's leaving."

Yemen has faced political crisis ignited by opposition-backed street protests since mid February, which undermined the security and stability of the country.

Saleh, who has already admitted losing control of several provinces, is warning of civil war and national split if he is forced to step aside.

More than 120 demonstrators have been killed in clashes with security forces since late January. There are also fears that the violence could escalate, as the majority of the country's 23 million people own guns.

Source: Xinhua
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