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Yemen: At least 9 killed in Taiz fighting, as UN envoy visits Sanaa

Heavy fighting in Yemeni city of Taiz kills at least 9 people, as UN envoy Jamal Benomar arrives in Sanaa to push for removal of President Saleh under a Gulf-brokered peace plan.

Yemen sanaa 11 11 2011Enlarge
A wounded Yemeni anti-regime protester is rushed to hospital in Sanaa on November 10, 2011, as security forces killed one man and wounded others during protests calling for President Ali Abdullah Saleh's prosecution. UN envoy Jamal Benomar is in Sanaa on a mission to secure the removal of Saleh. (MOHAMMED HUWAIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Fighting in Yemen's southern city of Taiz killed at least nine people Friday, with the violence coming a day after a UN envoy arrived in the country on a mission to help with the removal of President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

Reuters reported that 23 people were wounded in the heavy fighting between Saleh's Republican Guards and opposition tribesmen. Witnesses told Reuters that a woman and two young children were among the people killed in the tank and mortar fire aimed at two residential neighborhoods.

Taiz is Yemen's third largest city, and is located 120 miles south of Sanaa, the capital. It has been a hotbed of dissent since protests against Saleh's 33-year rule broke out in January.

Anti-government activists in Taiz are planning to march again after Friday prayers, the Associated Press reported.

UN envoy Jamal Benomar arrived in Sanaa on Thursday, to press for a transition from Saleh under a peace plan brokered by Gulf Arab countries.

He has been meeting with government and opposition leaders to push for an end to the violence, BBC News reported.

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