21 Apr 2011

Yemeni president says he won't resign

5:47 pm on 21 April 2011

President Ali Abdullah Saleh of Yemen is rejecting opposition calls for him to resign immediately as at least four people died in anti-government protests.

Mr Saleh has said he will not seek re-election when his term expires in 2013 but he has faced an unprecedented wave of protestors who want him to stand down now.

The BBC reports he has warned of the possibility of civil war of he is forced out and in a speech to female supporters accused his opponents of conspiracies and coups.

In the continuing opposition protests, witnesses say one person was killed in the coastal town of Hudaida and three demonstrators are reported to have died of their injuries in the capital Sanaa.

On Wednesday, United Nations Security Council members called for restraint and dialogue between protesters and authorities in Yemen but the council's first talks on the crisis ended in New York without an agreed public statement, with diplomats saying Russia objected.