Saturday Nov 26, 201104:42 PM GMT
'Saleh should be held accountable'
Mon Apr 25, 2011 12:46AM
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Thousands of people in Yemen are calling for President Ali Abdullah Saleh's trial despite a deal that has been reached to end his 32-year reign.

The deal planned by the Persian Gulf Arab states grants immunity from persecution to the embattled president and his family.

Immunity from persecution would be offered to Saleh if he steps down within 30 days and hands over power to his deputy, the Press TV correspondent reported from Sana'a on Sunday.

Tens of thousands of protesters continued their demonstrations on the streets of the capital Sana'a to protest against the deal.

Since late January, hundreds of thousands of people have regularly taken to the streets in various cities and demanded the ouster of the ruling regime.

The popular protests have often been met with brutal crackdown by riot police. According to local sources, the death toll has surpassed the 300 mark.

After increasing pressure from neighboring countries, particularly by Saudi Arabia, the Yemeni president agreed to the initiative in principal. Protesters on the street, however, have rejected the proposal, calling for the president to step down immediately and that Saleh should be held accountable for the violent crackdown on protesters.

The president first agreed to step down but then reviewed his position in accordance with the constitution, said Yemeni political analyst, Nabil al-Shargbi. He added that the concern is that the disputing parties might now decide to sort out their differences on the streets.

Meanwhile, Deputy Information Minister Abdoh al-Janadi confirmed at a press conference that the president will step down and that the transition will take place in accordance with the Yemeni constitution.

The Yemeni opposition has also agreed to the deal, which also calls for a unity government to be formed within a week.

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