Jihadist forces and other Islamic supremacist thugs have shown a knack in recent months for showing up at demonstrations and doing exactly what protesters are warning against or want to stop. Here is yet another protest in need of a “Thank You For Proving Our Point” sign.
“Islamist fighters halt Yemen peace march: witnesses,” from Reuters, December 31:
ADEN, Yemen (Reuters) – Islamist militants fired into the air on Saturday to halt a peace march by thousands of Yemenis who were demanding an end to fighting that has forced them to flee their homes in the south, witnesses said.
Marchers told Reuters they were stopped on a 50 km (31 mile) walk from the port city of Aden to Zinjibar, capital of southern Abyan province where the army has been battling fighters suspected of having links with al Qaeda.
The southern fighting is one of many challenges facing the impoverished state, which has also been rocked by nearly a year of protests against the 33-year rule of outgoing President Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The United States, and top oil producer Saudi Arabia, are both concerned about the growing chaos in the country, which is close to oil shipping routes.
Analysts fear the unrest could be exploited by al Qaeda’s arm in Yemen, seen as the group’s most powerful branch.
The marchers said they were calling on both sides to lay down their arms in the south and demanding the government open the Aden-Zinjibar coastal highway, a key trade route which has remained closed during the conflict.
The protesters, who said 20,000 people took part in the march including women and children, told Reuters they forced their way through a military check-point on the road before meeting the militants….