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Nov. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Yemeni forces killed 16 people and injured more than 50 when they shelled the southern city of Taiz to suppress anti-government demonstrators at Friday prayers, a protest activist said.
A nine-year-old child was among the dead, Taha Sharabi, who’s also a doctor at the al-Rawdah hospital, said today in a telephone interview. The shelling also killed four women and prompted a general strike in the city today, according to Ahmed al-Wafi, another protester.
Demonstrations this year in Yemen, the Arab world’s poorest country, were inspired by revolts that ousted the leaders of Tunisia and Egypt. They expanded as military and tribal leaders joined the opposition. Efforts by the Gulf Cooperation Council to broker an agreement under which President Ali Abdullah Saleh would step down have failed.
Tens of thousands of people protested in the capital Sana’a today after government forces attacked Taiz. One person died when eight mortar shells struck Taiz’s al-Rawdah Hospital, where the dead and wounded had been taken, Abdulrahim Sultan, a medic, said by telephone yesterday.
A United Nations envoy to Yemen arrived in Sana’a on Nov. 10 for talks with the government and opposition, seeking agreement on the GCC proposal for a transition of power. Saleh returned to Yemen on Sept. 23 after three months in Saudi Arabia, where he received medical treatment following a rocket attack on his compound in the capital.
--With assistance from Glen Carey in Riyadh. Editors: Amanda Jordan, John Buckley
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