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Yemen Names Peace Committee as Fighting Drags On
December 5, 2011

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In the shadow of continued fighting outside the capital, Sanaa, the government of Yemen named a group of lawmakers to finish the work started by the deal that will remove the president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, from office.

Forces loyal to Saleh continued to clash with anti-government protesters in Taiz, a city south of Sanaa. A total of 19 people have died in that city in the past few days.

Vice-President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi named the members of the committee, tasked with returning the armed forces to their barracks and keeping the peace when they leave. The committee was made up of equal numbers from the General People's Congress, loyal to Saleh, and the Joint Meeting Parties, leading the opposition. 

Saleh, who has led the country for decades, agreed to step down in exchange for immunity from prosecution, a development that didn't sit too well with people who have protested against him in recent weeks. 

The clashes in Taiz were the most recent in a large number of violent struggles in the country's larger cities in recent weeks and months, as the government dispatched more and more soldiers and task to quell the unrest due to Saleh's continuing authoritarian policies and behaviors. 

Saleh himself escaped an assassination attempt several months back and had been convalescing in neighboring Saudi Arabia, where the deal calling for his removal was signed. 

Elections for a new government are scheduled for February 2012.



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