Tuesday, December 28, 2010

YemenWatch: Tuesday December 28, 2010

The upcoming elections are getting messier and messier.  A southern separatist leader is saying the JMP (Joint Meeting Parties) financed some of their sabotage operations, so the Interior Ministry is investigating.  The leader of the Yemen Socialist Party has been detained.  Two deputy prime ministers and 7 ministers of parliament have resigned, because they have to be out of their jobs for 3 months so they can run in the elections.  President Saleh is calling for monitors to oversee the elections, which have been boycotted by the opposition parties.  The elections are in April and it should be interesting.

A man accused of killing a French engineer will get his verdict next month.  He is on trial along with Anwar al-Awlaki and Othman al-Awlaki (in absentia).

Yemen is expanding its counter-terrorism forces.  It's creating 4 new branches in Shabwa, Marib, Hadramawt, and Abyan provinces.  The Yemen Times quotes an expert as saying it's because of pressure by the US.

The International Committee for the Red Cross has set up video conferencing for Yemeni relatives of Guantanamo Bay detainees.

A man in Aden and his bodyguard were killed in a tribal dispute.

Somebody tried to burn down a journalist's home, but his neighbors helped put out the fire.

South Korea is helping to fund some hospitals in rural Taiz province.

A huge fire at a Turkish furniture store in Sana'a is estimated to have cost the store $2.5 million.

The Anti-Khat Al-Najat Foundation has launched a campaign to keep students off of khat (qat).  It's estimated that Yemenis spend about $7 million per day on qat and the trees need a lot of water.

A drug bust netted 37 kilos of hashish in Sana'a.

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