One might have expected that last month’s presidential “election,” which saw long-time dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh replaced with a new US-backed ruler in a single-candidate vote, would have ended the long-time power transfer dispute. That does not seem to be the case.
Now, Saleh is once again issuing demands related to his leaving the country, saying that he won’t leave unless 10 of his biggest rivals, including a top general and a number of tribal leaders, are expelled from the country too, saying it is necessary for the “sake of stability.”
This demand was not a part of any of the signed power deals, though Saleh had at one point proposed the idea. Officials say that he is once again trying to foil the “power transfer deal,” something he’s repeatedly done over the past year.
But isn’t the power transfer deal already done? Maybe not, as a number of Saleh allies and relatives remain in key positions in the nation’s security forces, and while there is no obvious route for him to retake his office from the US-backed Major Gen. Hadi, he could make life difficult for the new ruler, particularly as it relates to control of the military.
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