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Foreign Office Minister urges Yemeni people to seize electoral opportunity

Minister for the Middle East and North Africa Alistair Burt said that tomorrow's poll is a crucial opportunity to endorse political change in the country.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

He said:

“I strongly welcome tomorrow’s Presidential election in which the Yemeni people have the opportunity to show their support for political freedom and exercise their democratic rights for the first time since 2006. The interim election represents a key moment in Yemen’s political transition, and I call on all Yemenis across the political spectrum to take part peacefully. I hope that they will seize this chance to turn their back on conflict and political marginalisation.

“There are clear challenges facing the Yemeni people and the authorities. But their courage, commitment and hard work have made possible something that was unimaginable just months ago. The small minority who would seek to disrupt events through intimidation and violence must not be allowed to win. I condemn all recent attacks on polling stations and election commission staff.

“Tomorrow’s poll must also be respected. It is a crucial opportunity to endorse political change in a country that for too long has suffered from humanitarian, economic and security crises”.

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Published 21 February 2012