Yemen’s Saleh says will sacrifice everything for country

SANAA (Reuters) – Embattled Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh addressed a huge pro-government rally in the capital on Friday in which he said he would sacrifice everything for his country, suggesting he has no plans to step down.

“I swear to you that I will sacrifice my blood and soul and everything precious for the sake of this great people,” he told thousands of supporters.

Weeks of protests across Yemen have brought Saleh’s 32-year rule to the verge of collapse but the United States and neighboring oil giant Saudi Arabia, an important financial backer, are worried about who might succeed him in a country where al Qaeda militants flourish.

Pro-and anti-Saleh Rallies attracted large numbers in Sanaa even before midday prayers, a time which has been a critical period for drawing crowds in protest movements that have swept across the region and unseated entrenched rulers in Tunisia and Egypt.

(Writing by Erika Solomon; Editing by Nick Macfie)

Yemen’s Saleh says will sacrifice everything for country