Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Tribes Seize City in SW Yemen

Tribes in Yemen have actively been fighting government forces since Yemeni dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh left several days ago to undergo emergency surgery. Last week al Qaeda took over two cities and now it appears that the tribesmen are doing the same.

Tribal fighters took over Taiz, one of the most important cities in the country, located in the southwest. It appears that the government is powerless to stop them.

Government forces have been regrouping in an effort to re-enter the city. Yemen's government has faced international criticism for excessive use of force against anti-regime protesters and the deaths of anti-government demonstrators in Taiz.

"The clashes continued for hours and no one was able to leave their houses. A large number of protesters in Freedom Square in Taiz left the square as the clashes were near there," said Sameer Saeed, an eyewitness said.

If Saleh dies or does not come back soon, his entire government may collapse under the weight of tribes, opposition, and Islamists. Even if he did come back, the situation is now in a state of civil war.

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