SANAA, Yemen, Aug. 19 (UPI) — Members of the Yemeni opposition are accused of having a role in the attack in Sanaa that gravely wounded the country’s president, the government said.
Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh spent nearly two months in a hospital in Saudi Arabia recovering from wounds suffered during a June 3 attack on his presidential compound.
Abdul Janadi, Yemeni’s deputy information minister, was quoted by the Yemen Post as saying a defected military commander and an opposition leader had a hand in the attack.
“There are accusations that Hamid al-Ahmer, a prominent opposition politician and businessman, and Ali Muhsen al-Ahmer, commander of the first armored division which announced peaceful support to the Yemeni revolution, were involved in the assassination attempt,” the minister was quoted as saying.
The Yemeni government this week criticized the opposition for beginning the steps to form a revolutionary council, warning it could lead to further unrest in the country.
Saleh has defied pressure to step down for most of the year. In a speech this week, he said he was the legitimate leader until 2013.
An editorial in Yemen’s state-run news agency Saba last month said members of the opposition movement in Yemen were collaborating with al-Qaida to overthrow the government, saying there were similarities between the attack and the October 2000 attack by al-Qaida against the USS Cole in the Gulf of Aden.