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Yemen's Saleh promises to step down; skeptical West mulls sanctions

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Saleh critics say that the president has intentionally allowed security to deteriorate to shore up his argument that he is the only one who can control Yemen.

“Saleh has used war and chaos to suppress the protests. He is trying to say that his presence is the only way for Yemen’s stability and so he allowed al-Qaida and fighters to run free in southern Yemen,” said Al-Galil Waddah, a spokesman for the Yemen Observatory for Human Rights, according to AP. 

The months of unrest have also created the risk of a humanitarian crisis. Vice President Abdu Rabu Mansour warned Saturday that a "hunger revolution" was looming, Xinhua reports. According to a report from Al Arabiya, earlier this year Yemen was the fourth lowest country in the Arab world on the UN human development index – and that was before the uprising began, disrupting access to water, food, and electricity. Almost half of Yemenis live below the poverty line, about a third don't get three meals a day, and more than a third are unemployed.

… Relief supplies from the international community are not guaranteed to reach civilians, the looming humanitarian crisis is largely ignored by officials as the political situation take the spotlight on policy. Many areas remain inaccessible to aid organizations because of running battles. …

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