This post is just the last night and the day the Life March as it arrived in Sanaa and what happened. If you want to follow the journey from the beginning check my post with videos and pictures from day one
As the Life March Spokesman put it: “If we were afraid from the repressive regime, we wouldn’t have come out from Freedom Square in Taiz.”
This is the Life March getting through Yaslih check point, the are crowds huge:
The protesters could no longer go on, and camped out in Khidar and although the weather was chilly and a lot of the youth were exhausted they had high spirits. The protesters took shelter in Al-Farrok school and the nearby mosque, a lot of them spending the night without any blankets on cold floors.
As you can see they are in high spirits, in Khidar chanting and dancing:
The day came – after five days, after 250 kilometres and the heat of the sun in the day and the chilly nights. The end was in sight, things seemed to be looking up;
@alguneid tweeted: “We kiss the soil you marched on” Saleh’s Tribe Sanhan to Taiz Life March as they passed through their territory before entering Sanaa.
As @NotUntilHefalls put it: “This is turning out to be epic Taiz is coming to Saleh!! 33 YEARS later!!”
Millions entered Sanaa, they flooded the streets; chanting full of hope and never ending dreams. It looked like the end of the road had been reached without any blood shed. Unkown to us this was going to be the beginning of the end. The regime had other plans, they were not about to let the youth enjoy the jubilation. The inital reports were that the Life March were headed to freedom square in Sanaa, where the youth had set up to welcome them:
Even a massive a cake ready, waiting: (Picture taken from @ionacraiq):
There were also other reports that some of the youth wanted escalation and were prepared to march to the presidential palace:
@bafna3: “Marchers on 60th St & 70th Streets in Sanaa but these do not lead to Change Square. Both streets lead to the President’s Palace.”
Security forces and pro-Saleh thugs had their own welcoming parade ready too – tear gas, amongst other things:
Then came the dreaded news; live bullets, tear gas and water canons being used on protesters.
Dar Salm roundabout:
A tweet from @brrhom: I just talked to my little brother who really was shocked! Saying that Security forces open fire on the life March at Dar Salm roundabout.
Nadaa (@Nadaa2124) was tweeting everything happening on the ground; thanks to one of the protesters on the march:
By phone: @NasserMaweri ” People are dying now, they have opened live bullets and scores injured”
Water cannons being used on the Life March protesters yet their message still peaceful “Oh Our Army, Oh Our Army – let no one divide us”:
The injured began to stream into the Field Hospital inevitably the death toll began to rise; slowly but none the less it rose:
So you understand the sheer perseverance of the Life March protesters, I will let his feet tell you the story:
After days of walking a protester at the field hospital with a gunshot wound to the foot:
A Life March protester who got shot in the neck; he later died at the Field hospital:
Abeer Al-Athwari, injured by security forces speaking about her ordeal:
Adding to the injured and the dead there were also reports of some youth being kidnapped. Al Masdar Online reported: Tens of youth who were part of the Life March have been kidnapped by Republican Guards on 50th street in Sanaa.
There were youth trapped in Taiz street some injured, claims that ambulances were denied access and for a while it seemed that the worst possible scenario was happening.
The youth though had other plans, their determination and the sheer size of them outweighed anything and they went through the barricades regardless:
@Nadaa2124 By phone: @NasserMaweri “people are watching us 4rm houses as we pass & they greet us like heroes coming back victorious from battle”
After five days Sanaa finally congratulated the brave protesters of the Life March; although the ending was not as they’d hoped.
Thousands in change square waiting for the Life March to arrive:
The celebration that took place when Sanaa welcomed the Life March:
A few words from a spokesman of the Life March in Sanaa:
The end had been reached, but not without claiming some losses. The Life March reached it’s destination only for it to seem like it was the beginning. The mountains, exhaustion and roads did not kill; but bullets deprived some of the heroes from getting to the finish line. It’s reported that at least nine were killed from the peaceful protesters of the life march.
The life march became the beacon of hope that rose from above a dark place. Taiz became Yemen’s light getting brighter whenever it seemed all was lost. The great people of that city were determined to take their country back; they were determined to cleanse it of Saleh and Co. The life march brought a sense of unity, with it pride and the search for justice. The media chose to not cover the Life march, but the people carried on unfazed by it all. The Life March showed us that none were ready to let go of their dreams and that they were not scared of death. Their message loud and clear the revolution is not dead and will not die until the people overthrow the regime – to shuffle chairs and name tags will not do.
“I’ve settled with the fact that we’re gonna lose people whether we like it or not.”
The above is a tweet from @FightForYemen a protester at the Life March.