Armed separatists kidnap republican guards in south Yemen

Armed separatists kidnap republican guards in south Yemen
# 02 May 2010 02:07 (UTC +04:00)
Baku-APA. Yemeni armed separatists kidnapped two soldiers of the Republican Guards in the restive southern province of Lahj and demanded the government to free two of their jailed southern leaders, state and independent media reported on Saturday, APA reports citing web-page.

The group gave the government 48 hours to release the detained leaders, or it would not "be responsible for the lives of the abducted soldiers," privately-owned News Yemen reported.

The kidnapping took place in the city of Radfan in southern province of Lahj, the Defence Ministry said on its website.

"The two abducted soldiers were on their way to the barracks from their hometown of province of Taiz after finishing their vacation," said the ministry.

"They did not wear their army uniform when they were intercepted by the armed separatists," it added.

According to the ministry, the armed separatist group led by Tahir Tammah, who has recently been added to the "wanted list" for committing criminal accounts against national unity by security authorities.

Northern and southern Yemen were unified in 1990 according to a deal between the People’s General Congress and the Yemeni Socialist Party. However, the deal fell apart, leading to a crisis between the two allies, which developed into a civil war in 1994.

Recently, voices rise in South Yemen where secessionist sentiments are simmering, calling for disengagement from the north and the restoration of the southern state.