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Yemeni President Rejects Opposition ‘Road Map’ for Resignation

President Ali Abdullah Saleh
Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh. Photographer: Mohammad Huwais/AFP/Getty Images

Yemen’s President Ali Abdullah Saleh rejected a plan for his resignation that the opposition said would lead to a peaceful transition to democracy.

The plan is a “blatant overthrow of democracy and constitutional legitimacy,” the official Saba news service cited an unidentified official at the presidential office as saying. The country’s reference is the constitution and “deviating” from it “poses grave risks,” it said.

Yemen’s opposition coalition gave Saleh a plan outlining a smooth transfer of power based on a statement by the president that he will not seek an extension or transfer power to his son, Mohammed al-Sabri, a spokesman for the coalition, said in an e-mailed statement on March 3. The plan would see Saleh out of office before his term ends in 2013.

About a dozen people have been killed in Yemen in more than three weeks of protests against Saleh’s three-decade rule. The demonstrations were inspired by the popular uprisings that overthrew the presidents of Tunisia and Egypt.

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