Middle East News
Poll stations in Yemen attacked ahead of presidential vote
Feb 20, 2012, 11:47 GMT
Sana'a - Several polling stations in Yemen were targeted by blasts on Monday, according to pro-democracy activists, amid calls from a separatist movement for a boycott of Tuesday's presidential election, which sees Vice President Abd Rabu Mansour Hadi as its sole candidate.
A blast was recorded outside an educational institute in the southern province of Aden that was to be used as a polling station for Tuesday's vote.
An unknown group fired a rocket-propelled grenade on another polling station in the same province. No one was injured in the attacks, according to the online Ain Yemen news, which is run by Aden-based activists.
In the southern sea port city of al-Makla, flames were seen rising from another polling station.
The Southern Movement, which is seeking independence for the country's southern provinces, has described the election as a 'farce' and has called for collective acts of civil disobedience to mark Tuesday's vote.
The election is the centrepiece of a United Nations-sponsored power-transfer deal signed in November by the outgoing president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, and the opposition.
In a televised speech late Sunday, Hadi pledged to address the concerns of southern separatists and northern rebels and said his government's two-year plan would focus on unifying the army following a string of defections to the anti-Saleh camp.