Yemeni general vows to topple Saleh
A defected Yemeni army commander has pledged to overthrow President Ali Abdullah Saleh amid rising anti-government protests in the country, Press TV reported.
In a statement on Monday, Major General Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar vowed to protect protesters and demanded that Saleh steps down peacefully in order to avoid further bloodshed.
Ahmar, who is the former head of the northwestern military zone, quit in protest at the March 18 shootings that left 52 protesters dead outside Sana'a University in the capital and joined protesters.
Meanwhile, dozens of cabinet ministers, lawmakers, diplomats and tribal leaders abandoned the Yemeni president and joined the opposition to show solidarity with the people.
The commander also said via a spokesman that he would topple the incumbent regime in the Middle Eastern country.
Ahmar noted that he would back the "peaceful youth revolution, whatever the cost will be."
Anti-government protesters once again on Monday gathered at Change Square in the capital, demanding Saleh to stand trial.
The protesters have been camping near Sana'a University since mid-February.
However, three-decade ruler Saleh has rejected calls to step down immediately, saying that he is ready to cede power only to "safe hands."
Dozens of people have so far been killed in anti-government demonstrations in Yemen.