Shoot-out outside Yemen polling station

2012-02-18 13:03

Aden - Southern militants opposed to Yemen's single candidate presidential election next week exchanged fire with police outside a polling station late on Friday, leaving three civilians wounded, residents said.

Supporters of the Southern Movement opened fire on the polling station in the Dar Saad neighbourhood of the region's main city Aden as part of their campaign to disrupt the vote, in which veteran Vice President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi is the sole candidate.

A woman was among the wounded, the residents said.

Security forces also arrested four armed militants of the Southern Movement in Aden on Friday evening as they were handing out pamphlets calling for a boycott of the vote, a security official said.

Security has been bolstered in Aden in the run-up to the election, with police deployed to guard polling stations and extra checkpoints set up on main roads, an AFP correspondent reported.

Separately, the UN envoy to Yemen urged everyone to turn out for the vote.

"We invite all parties to participate in the election," Jamal Benomar told journalists on Saturday as he arrived in Sanaa to monitor the poll.

"No one should be excluded from the political process," he added, saying he had made this point to the Southern Movement and to Zaidi Shiite rebels in the north of the country.

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