Yemen pressed on power transfer goals

Feb. 25, 2013 at 9:58 AM

SANAA, Yemen, Feb. 25 (UPI) -- Yemeni President Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi needs to take security concerns to heart as he enters his second year in office, Human Rights Watch said.

Hadi announced plans for a national dialogue last month. Yemen has struggled with national security and southern separatist campaigns in the face of a threat from al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.

Human Rights Watch said Hadi's administration needs to examine the conduct of national security forces and make a clean break with the past regime of long-time former President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

"Despite some noticeable improvements in Yemen, there have been new human rights violations, and entrenched interests on all sides have stymied efforts to punish those responsible," Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement.

Four protesters died last week in clashes with security forces in Aden. Tensions are high in the country as Yemeni's mark the anniversary of the end of Saleh's tenure and the start of Hadi's second year in office.

A national dialogue conference is expected to prepare for a draft constitution. General elections should take place in 2014.

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