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Yemen Polling Station Blown Up Ahead of Vote

Symbolic election will install Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 20, 2012 7:24 AM CST

(Newser) – Gunmen blew up a voting station today in southern Yemen, one day before the country is to go to the polls to rubber stamp its vice president as the new head of state. Gunmen fired a rocket-propelled grenade at the station, then fled, according to a security official. No one was hurt, and police are searching for suspects. The attack in the port city of Aden underlines the security vacuum in the Arab world's poorest country.

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Under a US-backed deal brokered by Yemen's Gulf Arab neighbors, Ali Abdullah Saleh's deputy, Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi, is to become president after a vote tomorrow in which he is the only candidate. Posters and huge banners brandishing Hadi's photo and urging Yemenis to vote have appeared throughout the capital Sanaa as the vote approaches. Thousands of people attended an electoral rally early today in support of Hadi. Hadi, a low-profile figure who has served under Saleh for years, did not attend the event and has rarely addressed the public. Still, many Yemenis who originally opposed the deal that will bring Hadi to power now support the move merely because it will officially end Saleh's 33-year rule. (Read more Yemen stories.)

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