Yemenis hold Eid prayers amid protests in Sanaa

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Yemenis protested during Eid prayers on Friday, determined to continue their struggle until all their goals are achieved. At the same time, the government increased security on the streets of Sana’a in the wake of attacks on government officials earlier in the week.

Protests forced former president Saleh from office earlier in the year, but protesters in Sana’a said they have further demands. For example, they believe Saleh stole public funds that should be returned.

“We are still in the squares and will not leave these squares until we have achieved all the goals and all the demands that we came out for,” said Ibrahim al-Thifani.

“On this Eid, the revolutionaries express their determination. And they will continue their struggle until they achieve the rest of the goals,” said Adnan al-Werafi.

“The joy of Eid will not be complete for the revolutionaries until we see the looted money, stolen by the deposed [former president], returned to the treasury of the Yemeni people,” said Mohamed al-Asal.

Security was high and very visible on the streets of Sana’a.

There have been a number of assassinations and attempted assassination on security officials and politicians following the ejection of Islamist militants from towns in Abyan province in south Yemen. The militants took control during an uprising that threw president Ali Abdullah Saleh from office in February.

Saleh’s successor Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi has cooperated with Washington in an effort to crush the militants, including stepped up air strikes using U.S. unmanned planes or drones.

Restoring stability to Yemen is an international priority due to fears that al Qaeda and other Islamist militants may become entrenched in a country which neighbors oil producer Saudi Arabia and is close to major shipping lanes.