Yemeni troops attacked thousands of protesters in the nation’s capital, with gunfire, water cannons and tear gas on Saturday, killing at least 10 people, CNN reported.
More than 100,000 protesters gathered in Sanaa after the March of Life, a four day march of 155 miles, which started in Taiz, a city that has been a major opposition. The protest was aimed to put pressure on Yemen’s new government to not grant President Al Abdullah Saleh immunity from prosecution, the Associated Press reported.
Protester Murad Merali told CNN:
"Everyone here is screaming, blood and tear gas (is) everywhere. Saleh's forces are shooting with snipers. They are blocking streets and attacking women, tearing their hijabs. It's a war zone out here, smoke is everywhere. Soldiers also have batons.”
Demonstrators attempted to march down the main avenue where the presidential palace is located when troops fired to disperse the crowd, the AP reported. Protesters responded by throwing stones back.
Read more at GlobalPost: Yemen protesters call for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to stand trial, denounce government
According to a senior official, Vice President Abdu Rabu Hadi called security forces to evacuate the protesters and not harm them in any way. But a medic in Sanaa’s Change Square said 10 people died and dozens were injured, CNN reported.
As the clash between the protesters and troops continued, more people a part of the movement joined the scene from the surrounding area. According to the AP, witnesses said they saw tanks and artillery units from military camps heading toward the site of the conflict.
Protesters were eventually allowed to continued their march after international ambassadors intervened.
Yemenis have been protesting for the last 10 months for Saleh to step down as president. Last month Saleh signed a US and Saudi-backed deal which would force him to give his powers to the vice president in return for immunity.
Read more at GlobalPost: Clashes continue in northern Yemen, death toll rises