Monday, January 9, 2012

Law granting immunity to Saleh in the making

Yemen's cabinet proposed an immunity law Sunday under a Gulf-brokered plan to end months of protests that have paralyzed the country. The bill would give immunity to president Ali Abdallah Saleh ...''and those who worked with him in all civilian, military and security state bodies and institutions during his rule," the state news agency Saba reported.
Saleh's sons and nephews hold key posts in military and security units and were responsible for the death of hundreds of protesters during 11 months of demonstrations against Saleh's 33-year rule.

Yemenis are angry at the offer of legal immunity. Demonstrators have been taking to the streets, and a march has been held from Taiz to the capital Sana'a, calling for him to be put on trial.
The United States and Saudi Arabia are keen for the plan to work, fearing that a power vacuum in Yemen would destabilize the country even more and open opportunities for militants to gain more territory. However, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said Friday any guarantee of immunity to Saleh would violate international law.

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