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Yemeni president vows to step down in 2013

Arab World Materials 24 January 2011 03:08
Amid anti-government protests across Yemen, the country's President Ali Abdullah Saleh says he plans to resign after his term expires in 2013.
Yemeni president vows to step down in 2013

Amid anti-government protests across Yemen, the country's President Ali Abdullah Saleh says he plans to resign after his term expires in 2013.

Saleh made the remarks on state TV on Sunday following eight days of protests by thousands of Yemenis, who urged the president to step down, Xinhua reported.

The protesters, who had spilled out into the streets of capital Sanaa and other major cities, were outraged at potential constitutional amendments on January 1 this year, which could make Saleh the country's president for life.

The would-be amendments, which will be finally approved on March 1, would eliminate the limited two consecutive presidential terms and put the new presidential term for five years, in which president has the constitutional right to candidate himself for unlimited future terms, according the ruling party's website.

Around 200 journalists have also marched in Sanaa to demand the release of political detainees and activists, PressTV reported.

The 68-year-old president, who was re-elected for a seven-year mandate in Sep. 2006, called on the opposition to engage in a national dialogue with the ruling party.

"We are a democratic republic, we have peacefully changed rulers and we are against the succession. We call on opposition parties to take part in the dialogue with the ruling party before chaos takes place," he said.

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