51 killed in Yemen election rally stampede

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

A stampede in a stadium in Yemen, where President Ali Abdullah Saleh was holding a pre-election rally, killed at least 51 people and more than 230 were injured.

Most of the dead are children as some 150,000 people had gathered. The stampede occurred when people where trying to leave after Saleh finished his speech.

The incident happened at Ibb, about 180 kilometers south of Yemen's capital, Sanaa.

Saleh has said family members of the victims will be compensated with a monthly salary.

Saleh who reversed his earlier decision not to re-run for elections has been in power since 1978 as President of North Yemen and then head of the unified Yemen after North and South merged in 1990. First independent elections were held in 1999 in Yemen.