“First Mubarak now Ali,” was the phrase of the day in the Yemeni capital city of Sanaa, where a new round of anti-government protesters, mostly students, took to the streets demanding the ouster of their own aging dictator, President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The protesters attempted to march on the presidential palace, which sparked clashes with police who were blocking the way. Saleh’s government has ruled out an Egyptian style revolution, insisting the situation is entirely different.
But to the extent that Yemen is “different,” the situation seems even less stable, as Yemen has to deal with not only the same objections to a “president-for-life” running the nation as a dictator, but also multiple secessionist movements. Saleh’s rule, indeed, is virtually non-existent outside of the capital at this point, and even there he is dealing with major protests several times a week.
The latest round of protests, incredibly, was said to have been organized entirely around text messages amongst students, and Sanaa, like Cairo, has its own Tahrir Square, where the protesters assembled to demand change.