Saleh’s Supporters Clash with Anti-regime Protesters in Yemen

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Anti-regime protesters and supporters of Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh armed with daggers clashed in Sanaa on Wednesday, with at least four people wounded, an Agence France Presse correspondent reported.

Three journalists were also beaten up by Saleh supporters in the clashes near Sanaa University between students demanding the president's ouster and supporters of his ruling General People's Congress (GPC).

A protest march set off from the university heading towards Al-Sabiine square near the presidential palace, but the demonstrators were attacked by hundreds of Saleh's loyalists armed with batons, stones and daggers as soon as they left the campus.

The protesters responded by hurling stones and clashes later spread to the university campus where police fired warning shots in an attempt to disperse the crowds.

Protesters accused government "thugs" of "brutally" attacking them and charged the assailants included plainclothes police.

"The thugs and supporters of the ruling party ... (want to) massacre" the students, head of the university's student union Radwan Masud told AFP.

He vowed that the students will "continue their revolt and will not be hindered by the ruling party's actions."

Similar clashes have taken place on a daily basis this week as protesters, inspired by uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt, demand Saleh's ouster.

On Tuesday, police in Sanaa dispersed clashes between regime supporters and a crowd of anti-government protesters that left three wounded. In Taez, south of the capital, Saleh backers and protesters have also clashed.

On Monday, rocks and batons flew in the capital as the protesters -- mainly students and lawyers -- clashed with police and Saleh's supporters. Police also clashed with protesters in Sanaa on Sunday.

A sit-in by hundreds of judges demanding greater independence of the judiciary and the ouster of the Supreme Judicial Council, meanwhile, went into its second day outside the justice ministry in Sanaa.

The judges who have poured into Sanaa from around Yemen said they want all the members of the Supreme Judicial Council, including the justice minister, to be sacked. They also are demanding higher salaries.

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