Yemen Moves along Volatile Path to Democracy ; in Elections Wednesday, President Saleh Faces His First Significant Challenge in 28 Years

By Ginny Hill Contributor to The Christian Science Monitor | The Christian Science Monitor, September 2, 2006 | Go to article overview

Yemen Moves along Volatile Path to Democracy ; in Elections Wednesday, President Saleh Faces His First Significant Challenge in 28 Years


Ginny Hill Contributor to The Christian Science Monitor, The Christian Science Monitor


Nine million voters are set to go to the polls here Wednesday in combined presidential and local elections, concluding a heated and sometimes deadly month-long campaign.

Some 90,000 police and troops will deploy in an attempt to minimize the violence that has claimed at least seven lives in clashes between supporters of rival candidates in this country where small arms are freely available and gun ownership is the norm.

President Ali Abdullah Saleh, who in June reversed his earlier decision to step down after nearly three decades in power, is seeking a mandate for another seven-year term. His reelection is almost certain, observers say, raising questions about the pace of progress toward democracy, 15 years after Yemen became the first country to introduce to universal suffrage to the Arabian Peninsula.

"The prospect of replacing [President] Saleh probably scares a lot of people, because it would bring uncertainty and changes to the settled order," says Paul Harris, director of IFES, a prodemocracy organization based in Washington that will take part in monitoring the election. "But the constitution now limits the president to serving two elected terms in office, which - if he wins this year - would set Saleh's retirement date for his 70s."

Yemen has been an ally to the US in the global fight against terror. But critics maintain that corruption is rife here and the government is largely forced to rule through tribal proxies outside the capital Sanaa. And Yemen has long had a reputation for cultivating and exporting terrorism. The main challenger for the presidency, Faisal bin Shamlan, has been embroiled in election-eve allegations that his bodyguard was a senior Al Qaeda militant planning attacks against US interests in Sanaa.

Saleh, president of North Yemen and commander-in-chief of the armed forces prior to unification in 1990, emerged as Yemen's leader when the end of the cold war led to the collapse of the Socialist government in South Yemen and concluded more than a decade of conflict. During 28 years at the top, he has had to manage a complex network of tribal loyalties and military interests that run parallel to and often override party politics and parliamentary structures.

In 1999, in the first direct presidential elections, Saleh stood against a candidate from his own party - the General People's Congress (GPC) - and won 96 percent of the vote. Now, he is fighting his second election campaign and faces his most serious challenger in Mr. Shamlan, a former oil minister who resigned from his post in 1995 during a coalition government in protest over corruption, representing an alliance of the five main opposition parties.

Hamoud Munasser, a Yemeni journalist, says this is an important election for the development of democracy "because, for the first time, there is real competition between the ruling party and the opposition coalition. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Yemen Moves along Volatile Path to Democracy ; in Elections Wednesday, President Saleh Faces His First Significant Challenge in 28 Years
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.