Yemen Sets Presidential Election Date

Posted November 26th, 2011 at 2:00 pm (UTC-5)
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Yemen has announced a February 21 date for presidential elections, just days after President Ali Abdullah Saleh accepted a deal that calls for him to transfer power to a subordinate.

Vice President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi issued a decree on Saturday for the early voting.

On Wednesday, Mr. Saleh and Yemeni opposition leaders signed a plan brokered by the Gulf Cooperation Council that calls for Mr. Saleh to hand power to his deputy, who will begin the process of forming a national unity government.

The transfer is designed to end months of swelling protests against Mr. Saleh's 33-year rule. However, the president's opponents have held a series of demonstrations against the agreement because it gives him immunity from prosecution.

Earlier Saturday, the French news agency said an opposition coalition had nominated Mohammed Basindawa to head a new national unity government. It says the former member of Mr. Saleh's ruling party was tapped for the position late Friday.