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Thousands of Yemenis rally to demand south separation


08:20, May 22, 2013

ADEN, Yemen, May 21 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of Yemenis rallied in Yemen's southern port city of Aden on Tuesday, demanding the separation of the south, one day ahead of the country's Unification Day.

More than 8,000 pro-secession activists participated in the massive rally that took place in a public square in Aden, capital of the former south state, chanting "No unity... We demand outright independence."

A high-ranking leader of the pro-secession Southern Movement told Xinhua anonymously that "the event started and ended peacefully with no intervention by the Yemeni security forces that enhanced security in Aden."

The southerners complain of being economically and politically marginalized and discriminated against since northern troops won a four-month civil war in 1994, four years after the north and south Yemen united into the Republic of Yemen. However, the Yemeni government denied the charges.

Supporters of pro-secession Southern Movement staged almost daily rallies to protest against the national reconciliation dialogue, which was launched last month by President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, as part of a UN-backed political settlement to preserve the Yemeni unity.

The talks, which is set to run for six months, aimed to end split between northern and southern regions, draft a new constitution and pave the way for general elections by the end of Hadi's two-year interim period in February 2014.

However, some leaders of the Southern Movement refused to join the talks, insisting that the government should withdraw its troops from the south.

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Email|Print|Comments(Editor:LiangJun、Yao Chun)

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