Separatist Tensions Rise in Southern Yemen

Police Kill Protester Trying to Raise Southern Yemeni Flag

Tensions in southern Yemen continue to rise this evening after police killed a separatist protester in Lahej Province for trying to raise the flag of formerly independent South Yemen at a government building.

flag of South Yemen

South Yemen was unified with the Yemeni Arab Republic in 1990, but growing complaints about the treatment of citizens in the southern region have led to a growing secessionist movement.

The Saleh government has attempted to crush the secessionists with the military, ignoring international calls to focus on al-Qaeda and instead launching mass arrest campaigns in the southern provinces.

The December air strike which killed some 42 innocent civilians, mostly women and children, was also in southern Yemen. A spokesman for the Southern Movement separatist group said the public “apology” over the killings was insufficient, and that those responsible should actually be held accountable. The US-backed attack was said to have targeted al-Qaeda.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.