Sept. 4- Yemeni protesters promise to escalate the revolution, as thousands turn out to demonstrate against President Ali Abdullah Saleh's regime. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
Turning up the heat in Yemen. Thousands of protesters gathered in the Yemeni capital Sanaa Sunday vowing to escalate the revolution against President Ali Abdullah Saleh's regime. SOUNDBITE: Protester Fakher al Azab, saying: (Arabic): "We are announcing the next phase of the escalation of the revolution. We want the coming days to be the memorable days when history will record the last days of rule of what is left of this family so that dignity will be restored to the Yemen people along with their freedom." The demonstrations come after a suicide bomber drove into a checkpoint on Saturday killing at least four soldiers in the south of the country, where the army is fighting militants suspected of links to al Qaeda. While Saleh recovers in neighboring Saudi Arabia from a June assassination attempt, militants have seized at least three cities the south in recent months. Yemen has repeatedly said its forces were advancing against militants suspected of links to al Qaeda, but the army is yet to gain back control over the flashpoint province of Abyan. The United States and Saudi Arabia fear turmoil in Yemen will give al Qaeda's Yemen-based branch more room to launch attacks in the region and beyond. Saleh is clinging on to power despite months of protests against his 33-year rule. Deborah Lutterbeck, Reuters