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Yemen's Saleh agrees to form GCC deal-based national government


09:34, November 14, 2011

SANAA, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh agreed to entrust his deputy with forming a national unity government based on a Gulf-brokered power-transfer initiative, urging opposition leaders to implement a UN resolution, the state- run Saba news agency reported on Sunday.

"President Saleh has agreed to entrust his deputy Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi with forming the national unity government in accordance to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) initiative," Saba quoted government spokesperson Abdu al-Janadi as saying.

"The Yemeni government resolves to implement the UN Security Council Resolution 2014 in full, and we call for the opposition leaders to end their weeks-long shuttle trip in Gulf countries and return to Sanaa to implement it," al-Janadi said.

The GCC deal, which was backed by the UN resolution on Oct. 21, stipulates Saleh hand over power to his deputy Hadi and resign in 30 days in return for immunity from prosecution. Hadi would then form an opposition-led national government and arrange presidential elections in 60 days.

However, Fathi al-Azab, spokesman for the opposition coalition Joint Meeting Parties (JMP) claimed that "Saleh has told the visiting UN envoy to Yemen Jamal bin Omar that he wants to stay on as honorary president until a new president is elected in the proposed early elections."

Tarik al-Shami, spokesman for the ruling party General People's Congress (GPC), denied that Saleh has asked for new amendments in the deal.

"Neither President Saleh nor the GPC asked for such alleged amendments, all what we ask is the opposition leaders should come back to Sanaa to sign the GCC deal," al-Shami told Xinhua.

The rival parties last Thursday issued coincident official statements that the UN-backed GCC deal would be signed in the next few days.

The impoverished Arab country has been rattled by 10-month-long upheaval, leaving thousands of people killed and injured since the eruption of protest in late January demanding an end to Saleh's 33- year rule.

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