18 killed in south Yemen violence this year: report
SANAA — Eighteen people were killed and 120 wounded in south Yemen violence during the first quarter of 2010, according to a report presented to parliament on Saturday by the deputy interior minister.
Ten members of the security forces were killed and 48 wounded while eight civilians were killed and 72 wounded, the defence ministry's 26sep.net news website quoted the report by Saleh Zuari as saying.
The unrest centred on the southern province of Daleh and some districts in Lahij and Abyan provinces, said the report, according to the website.
The report also said there were "245 protests and strikes" and "87 bombings and shootings" in the same areas during the first three months of the year.
Residents of south Yemen, who complain of discrimination and a lack of financial aid, hold frequent protests to demand either increased autonomy or independence from the north.
Protests sometimes result in clashes between security forces and demonstrators.
South Yemen became an independent state following the end of British rule in 1967. It was united with the north in 1990, when Yemen became the Arabian peninsula's only republic.
Southerners seceded in 1994, sparking a short-lived civil war that ended with the region overrun by northern troops.