See all those languages up there? We translate Global Voices stories to make the world's citizen media available to everyone.

Learn more about Lingua Translation  »

Yemen: Bullets, Screams and Sirens (Video)

This post is part of our special coverage Yemen Protests 2011.

Breaking reports from Yemen's capital Sanaa claim that at least one university student has been killed and many others wounded in late-night fights with pro-government forces.

Witnesses say that pro-government “thugs” attacked the students with knives and rocks. Local media report that attackers also fired weapons from buildings at the student protesters, who have been staging a sit-in near the university of Saana since Sunday, February 20. University students and other young people have been leading protests for nearly two weeks against the deep political and economic problems facing the country.

Yemen currently ranks 133 out of 169 countries on the United Nations Development Programme's Human Development Index, lodged between Myanmar and Benin. According to Transparency International, Yemen is tied with Libya as the second to last in an index on how people judge the level of corruption in Middle Eastern and North African countries.

As one commentator, Ibrahim Sharqieh of the Brookings Center in Doha, put it:

“The unemployment rate and other economic indicators suggest that Yemen is near its breaking point.”

At the heart of some of the protesters’ anger lies the government of President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who has been in power since 1978. Saleh recently reiterated he would not leave until elections are held in 2013.

Tuesday night's violence came at the end of a day that saw thousands of protesters demonstrate in the city of Aden and Sanaa, where five protesters were injured.

In an occasionally choppy film, uploaded by EBNSHAMS, student demonstrators are shown clashing with attacking “bullies.” Gunshots can clearly be heard.

Here is how the news was reported on Twitter:

@carlconradi: What's this about pro-government trying to erect tents near the University? Information? #Yemen #Sanaa

@Yemen_2011: #Sanaa shooting -pro-gov planted tents near Univ, students & qabilis tried 2 kick pro-gov out & shooting started – still chking on it #Yemen

@ReemQatar:Just Now : Two killed many others wounded amongst protest against the gov't in #Yemen. #MiddleEast #Libya

@Yemen_2011: URGENT NEWS: The number of protesters outside #sanaa uni injured by the pro-govt (thugs) has now risen to 10 one in a critical condition #yf

@tomfinn__: students were attacked by men carrying pistols, knives and guns, over 20 injured #Sanaa #Yemen #yf

@Yemen_2011: wow…jst getting info frm friend here- Hashid joined students at 5pm – involved in Univ shooting 30misn ago, shooting back @ gov suporters

@tomfinn__: I confirm 2 people were killed (shot dead) and at least 20 people injured at #Sanaa university #yf I just saw the 5th ambulance leaving

@tomfinn__: Spoke 2 another doctor at #Sanaa uni:1 student shot dead on the spot another shot in the head, at hospital in critical condition. #yf”

@Yemen_2011: The 2cars driven by thugs that attacked the protesters in #sanaa number plates: mazda (2/6462) and the second mercedes (1/4121) #yf #sanaa

@shephardm:The first deaths in Sanaa. Witnesses saying two student protestors killed and many injured in late night clash with pro-Saleh forces. #yemen

@JebBoone:Just returned from #Sana'a Uni. After rock throwing exchange, Pro-Saleh thugs fire on rival demo. 1 dead, 1 critical, 20 injured.#Yemen #YF

@gregorydjohnsen: @prince640 I think it is unfair to blame this on the tribes – yes, temps rose, but reports suggest this was thugs not tribes

@Yemen_2011: What the flip goes on these dictators heads?! Any logical person would understand that if u kill ur ppl they are going to h8 u even more #yf

This post is part of our special coverage Yemen Protests 2011.

Receive great stories from around the world directly in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the best of Global Voices
* = required field
Email Frequency



No thanks, show me the site