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Updated: March 21, 2011 15:44 IST

Tanks deployed in Sanaa as top army general defects

AP
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Anti-government protestors bury a demonstrator who was killed in Friday's clashes with Yemeni security forces, during his funeral procession in Sanaa, on Sunday. Photo: AP.
Anti-government protestors bury a demonstrator who was killed in Friday's clashes with Yemeni security forces, during his funeral procession in Sanaa, on Sunday. Photo: AP.

Maj. Gen. Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar is the commander of the army’s 1st Armoured Division, units of which deployed were Monday in a major square at the Yemeni capital, Sanaa. Protesters have been camping out there as they call for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down.

Tanks and armoured vehicles have been deployed in the Yemeni capital after a top army commander and close aide to the country’s embattled leader announced he was defecting to the opposition.

Maj. Gen. Ali Mohsen al—Ahmar is the commander of the army’s 1st Armoured Division, units of which deployed were Monday in a major square at the Yemeni capital, Sanaa. Protesters have been camping out there as they call for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down.

News of Maj. Gen. al—Ahmar’s defection to the protesters’ cause came one day after crowds flooded cities and towns across Yemen to mourn dozens of protesters killed on Friday when Mr. Saleh’s security forces opened fire from rooftops on a demonstration in Sanaa.

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