One dead, 35 hurt in Yemen clashes: medics

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Sanaa, Feb 17 (AFP) Yemeni police today opened fire onprotesters injuring six people in the southern port city ofAden and another 25 people were wounded in violent clashesbetween pro- and anti-regime demonstrators in the capital cityof Sanaa.

Thousands of people marched in Aden''s Al-Mansuraneighborhood demanding President Ali Abdullah Saleh quit butthey were dispersed by police who opened fire. Six protesterswere hit and wounded, according to medical sources.

An AFP reporter said tensions between demonstratorsand police remained high in the tightly patrolled city whichhas been rocked by violent clashes for two days in a row.

Twenty people were wounded and a similar number werearrested yesterday when demonstrators stormed Al-Mansurapolice station and the central prison, according to a localofficial.

Hundreds of protesters also broke into shops and threehotels, setting car tyres ablaze and blocking roads.

"The police intervened only when the protests turnedviolent," he said.

Saleh ordered the set up of an "investigativecommittee to inquire about the unfortunate riots that haveoccurred in some parts of" Al-Mansura, state news agency Sabareported on Thursday.

In the capital, on the fifth day of student-leddemonstrations against the veteran leader, about 2,000demonstrators were attacked by regime backers as they leftSanaa University''s campus.

The protesters, chanting "The people want to overthrowthe regime," responded by hurling stones.

Police intervened with warning shots to separate thetwo sides, but later withdrew, as the protesters came underfire from Saleh supporters, a journalist in Sanaa said.

Fifteen of the injured were protesters and the restwere supporters of the regime, he said.

A stone hit an AFP photographer, injuring his head,while regime loyalists beat up an AFP videographer.

In Sanaa, protests have becoming increasingly violent,despite Saleh -- elected to a seven-year-term in September2006 -- urging dialogue on forming a government of nationalunity.

In Taez, south of Sanaa, protests continued for asixth day as demonstrators carrying "Leave Ali" banners set uptents at a road intersection near Al-Huraish Square afterpolice chased them away.

The protesters have called for a "Day of Rage"tomorrow, with the authorities in Taez reacting with a heavydeployment of Republican Guard forces and the army.

In Ibb, southwest of Sanaa, hundreds of protesterstook to the streets today demanding that Saleh step down.

Anger at rampant corruption has helped to fuel unrestin Yemen, the poorest country in the Arab world.

Separately, thousands of supporters of the SouthernMovement staged protests in several southern cities callingfor the secession of the formerly independent South of Yemen,witnesses said. (AFP)

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