Protests increase despite Presidential concessions
President Abed Rabbu Mansour Hadi has dismissed his Prime Minister Mohammed Salim Basindawa and his Cabinet in a move to quell protests led by Shia Houthi protesters over the past two weeks.
Tens of thousands of protesters have gathered on the outskirts of the capital Sana’a with their leader Sayyid Abdul-Malik al-Houthi calling for an expansion of the protests and civil disobedience. The protesters accuse the government of corruption and of marginalising the Shia community. The latest move by the President was dismissed by the protesters.
The President has agreed to the protesters demands to reduce petrol and diesel prices by 30%.
The Yemen News Agency (SABA) has published the text of an initiative which was agreed by the president yesterday. The full text is as follows:
“President Hadi approves national initiative to end Houthi escalation
[02/سبتمبر/2014] SANA’A, September 2 (Saba)- President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi chaired on Tuesday a wide-range assembly with members of the government, Parliament and Shura Council, representatives of political parties and civil society organizations, and social figures in Sana’a to discuss a national initiative to end the current standoff due to the Houthi escalation.
The initiative, which was presented by the Presidential Committee that was tasked to negotiate with AbdulMalik al-Houthi, includes the following:
1- The formation of a national unity government based on the principles of competence, integrity and national partnership:
• The President will name a prime minister within one week and assign him to form the new government, in consultation with the political forces. The President will specifically nominate ministers of defense, interior, foreign affairs and finance.
• The President determines the ratios of representation of the GCC signatories, Ansarullah [Houthis], the peaceful Southern Movement [Hirak], women and youth.
• Each party shall nominate two candidates for each post and the President will consult with Prime Minister to select one candidate.
• The President shall set a deadline for the political forces to nominate their candidates. Should any party fail to meet the deadline or refrain from taking part in the Government, the President is to take whatever he deems appropriate in line with his constitutional mandate.
2- The President of the Republic will issue a decree that provides for a reduction in the prices of oil derivatives as follows: the price of petrol will be YR 3500 per 20 litres and the price of diesel will be YR 3400 per 20 litres.
3- The program of the new government shall involve reviewing the economic, financial and fiscal policies and implementing a series of drastic reforms.
4- The program of the new government shall involve increasing the minimum wage of the state’s employees.
5- All political forces shall commit to implementing the NDC outcomes in accordance with timetabled mechanisms as well as to completing the process of drafting the new constitution to hold a nationwide referendum.
6- The government-owned media outlets as well as the private ones shall undertake to adopt a constructive and positive communication policy that is supportive of the political process and the NDC’s outcomes. They should be committed not to attack people or degrade them. They should refrain from inciting sectarian or regional conflicts or hatred. The Government of National Unity shall draw the appropriate mechanisms to achieve this end.
7- All political forces shall denounce violence, extremism and acts that jeopardize the country’s security and stability. This shall start with defusing the tensions by removing the camps and ending the sit-ins in and around the capital as well as imposing the state’s control over Amran, discontinuing confrontation in al-Jawf, and enforcing the rule of law on the entire Yemeni territories.
8- The Wide-range National Assembly calls upon AbdulMalik al-Houthi and Ansarullah [Houthis] to partake in this national solution to demonstrate the national partnership and maintain the security and unity of Yemen by committing to this initiative deal, especially provisions 6 and 7.”