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Transfer of power in Yemen cannot take place without President Saleh

Deputy Minister of Information Abdu al-Janadi has announced that the surgery of President Ali Abdullah Saleh has been successful and noted that the transfer of power in Yemen cannot take place as long as the president is out of the country.

During a news conference, al-Janadi criticizes the terrorist attacks mounted against the peaceful citizens in Taiz and urged the opposition leaders to extend their hands to Vice-President Abdu Rabbo Mansur Hadi who struggles, as he put it, to maintain national unity.

Al-Janadi began his news conference by providing this update on the health condition of President Saleh who is receiving treatment in Saudi Arabia, after the 3 June attack on the Presidential Palace's mosque in Sana�a:

"It gives me the greatest pleasure to break to the great Yemeni people and to all the political forces, be them in power or in the opposition, the news that the surgery underwent by the President has been successful. The president has also been transferred from the operation room to his own royal suite in the hospital where he is treated."

Commenting on the assassination attempt targeting President Saleh, al-Janadi said: "It is indeed a great happiness and a priceless joy that the president and his senior statesmen survived this terrorist massacre which targeted them in the mosque of the Presidential Palace."

Al-Janadi regretted that some Yemenis sought to show relief or satisfaction at the news of the attack on President Saleh, by saying: "It is deeply unfortunate and regrettable that this incident was a reason for some to rejoice."

Denouncing violence, al-Janadi said that celebrating death cannot rejoice anyone and terrorism can only yield joy in the souls of those who find it enjoyable to shed blood. Whatever starts with blood can only end with a sea of blood.

Touching upon the response that most of the Yemenis showed at the news of President Saleh's successful surgery, he said: "Certainly, the Yemenis expressed their joy through fireworks and mostly, also, with live bullets. There is no doubt that we were panicked at first, believing that war has broken out all of a sudden. But, afterward, we found out that this was only an expression of joy, which people manifest usually through tears, or, at times, by firing bullets."

Providing further details on President Saleh's health and involvement in the current Yemeni affairs, al-Janadi says: "In the intensive care unit, the president spoke first to Tariq Mohammad Abdullah Saleh - as I read on the Internet - to whom he said: 'Don't dare opening fire! Hold your horses!' That was the very first thing the President said after this incident. He meant to say: you should not seek vengeance."

According to al-Janadi, President Saleh had approved a ceasefire, before the attempt on his life, in response to a Yemeni mediation and to the call made by the Saudi King: "The president approved a ceasefire. He remained attached to the ceasefire in Sana�a. Those who left the stormed government buildings did not do so voluntarily. They were driven out by the sword of the rule of law. The valiant men of the Central Security and the armed forces expulsed them. These days, a different version is being disseminated, as some people are saying: we have stepped out of the state buildings by ourselves. This would have been better for Yemen, at present and in the future, if the assailants had really done so. Violations are still being reported here and there. We, in this news conference, would like to say that security violations exist in Sana�a, and they are numerous. They are well aware of these violations committed and they have to stop them. There are also provocations carried out by the First Armoured Division, whether outside the house of the vice president or in the 60 Street. We would like to remind General Ali Muhsin Saleh- who is a wise man - that he should avoid such provocations which do not serve security and stability in Yemen."

Elaborating on the political course of action envisaged while President Saleh is out of the country: "We want to turn the desire of President Saleh into reality, by maintaining Yemen's unity, security, and stability. The president stands ready to help us achieve this purpose, even if he has to give up power. He will do so out his concern for the Yemenis' unity, security, and stability, not because he is weak. The President is still holding contacts with the acting head of state, over most current Yemeni issues. He is also in contact with the Saudi King to discuss the oil crisis experienced by the Yemenis. As you have heard, a Saudi donation has been decided and three million oil barrels are now pouring into Aden refinery stations. As I keep saying, our national security is the security of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States altogether. Our concerns, grief, and joy are also shared by Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States. We urge the brothers in the opposition to raise to a high level of positive reasoning which can heal the bleeding wounds and restore trust among the parties involved in the political process. These should cooperate with the vice president, so that roads reopen, ceasefire in Sana�a be strengthened, and the violent abuses witnessed in peaceful Taiz end. Taiz dreams of the establishment of a civil and democratic state, based on order and law. Those who plundered government offices, without even sparing the garbage vehicles, cannot be the alternative that the Yemenis are seeking. We are seeking to establish a civil and democratic state, but a state believing first and foremost in peace. We support the youths who are expressing their stands in a civilized fashion. A peaceful protest is the greatest form of expressing one's opinion. It is also guaranteed by the constitution and the law."

Al-Janadi further called upon the armed men to leave Taiz and lay down their weapons, by saying: "Some people in Taiz want to resurrect the old era which vanished away. Some people have come to picture themselves as the tribal chieftains of Taiz. But Taiz is a civilized city which rejects such backward rulers".

Addressing the opposition leaders, al-Janadi urged them to work hand-in-hand with Vice-President Abdo Rabbo Hadi who seeks to preserve national unity: "I urge the leaders of the opposition to live up to their responsibility, and hold on to the peaceful character of their moves, instead of resorting to violence. They should remember this thought of Jamal Abdel Nasser: 'Whatever starts with blood, cannot but end with further blood".

Discussing the role of Mansur Hadi, al-Janadi said that the latter is actively involved in all issues pertaining to national security and works "selflessly and silently" for the good of all the Yemenis.

According to al-Janadi, Hadi is the supreme commander of the armed forces, coordinating all counterterrorism campaigns taking place in Zinjibar. In this regard, Al-Janadi reminds that the valiant Yemeni soldiers have inflicted heavy human and material losses on the terrorists by killing many al-Qaeda leaders over the last two days in the regions of Abyan and Shabwa.

On the ongoing fight against al-Qaeda, al-Janadi said: "I cannot conclude deals with al-Qaeda. Such people do not make deals. I do not want to sustain the harm that has already affected others. The Americans themselves failed to deal properly with them. When talking about Yemen, the Europeans are now saying: we are in deep trouble and it is not ruled out that al-Qaeda may be involved in this unfolding catastrophe. They are saying: Ali Abdullah Saleh should immediately hand over power. The only problem of Ali Abdullah Saleh, if any, is that he responded to the Americans by combating terrorism. He did so to please the Yemenis in the first place, but this move was credited to the Americans! We saw an ordinary government employee at the US Secretary of State popping out and saying: Saleh should leave office immediately. How is that? Where is president? He is ill and hospitalized in Saudi Arabia. There cannot be any talk about power transfer before the return of the President to Yemen. The decision belongs to him only. It behooves him to decide whether power should be transferred peacefully or not, according to his level of conviction in such an option."

Al-Janadi concluded by saying that the General People's Congress is Yemen's ruling party and will remain at the helm until the upcoming legislative elections which will bring to power whoever is chosen by the free will of the people.

Al-Janadi further noted that the price of democracy is high and "the protesters' demands will be ultimately fulfilled", but "without violence" and in keeping with the provisions of the constitution.

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