Yemen – President and PM in Saudi following attack

The situation in Yemen is now starting to make world headlines. Following President Saleh’s refusal to accept the GCC-sponsored political deal that would have seen him standing down from power (see previous post), the situation has degenerated into near civil war.

On Friday, a rocket attack was launched on the president’s compound in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa. The rocket hit the mosque in the compound where all the senior political figures of the regime seemed to be congregated. There were a number of deaths and both the president and the PM, Ali Mohammed Mujawar, were injured. There are conflicting reports about the nature of the president’s and the PM’s injuries. Technically, PM Mujawar is a caretaker PM. He and the government were dismissed by President Saleh in March and were asked to stay on only until a new government had been formed.

Anyway, it has now been confirmed that both the president and the PM have now gone to Saudi Arabia to receive treatment for their injuries. Remarkably, constitutional niceties seem to have been followed and there are reports that the Vice-President, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, has taken over as interim president in Saleh’s absence.

There are reports that a ceasefire is close. However, President Saleh’s absence from the country surely renders the situation even more unstable.

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