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article imageThousands join opposing groups in Yemen's 'Day of Rage'

By Adeline Yuboco     Feb 3, 2011 in World
San'ah - Thousands of Yemenis took to the streets as protestors and supporters of the current government held a "Day of Rage" rally on Thursday following President Ali Abdullah Saleh's promise not to run for re-election in 2013.
Supporters of the government marched down its route starting from the old city of San'ah and ending in Yemen's Tahrir Square while displaying portraits of the country's president. They received logistical support and protection from the Yemen police and military.
On the other hand, protestors held their street rally within the University District, located on the western side of the capital city of San'ah. They held up banners urging the President to step down as they chanted "down, down with the regime." One of the banners displayed during the anti-government demonstration read: "Thirty years of promises and thirty years of lies," according to the Associated Press.
The Washington Post reports: "No one interviewed believed that Saleh would give up power voluntarily. Saleh promised in 2005 not to seek another term, only to change his mind a year later."
Although initial reports stated that both rallies were peaceful as compared to the protests in Egypt, witnesses have reported that Yemen police have attempted to break the demonstrations held by protestors by firing their weapons. At least one protestor was wounded. It is unclear as of this posting time if the bullets used by the police were live ammunition or rubber bullets.
Yemen is considered to be the poorest nation in the Arab world. Political unrest is commonplace as the government faces an insurgency from the Houthis—a rebel group with ties to Al Qaeda.
On Wednesday, President Saleh announced that he would not be running for re-election in 2013. He went on further to assure that he is not positioning his son to take his place as the country's president.
More about President Ali Abdullah Saleh, political unrest, Political change, President hosni mubarak, yemen police
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