At least 9 casualtiesCar thieves and police shoot it out in Rawdha [Archives:2004/728/Front Page]

April 12 2004

On Saturday, April 10, a dramatic chase between car thieves and the police, which started in Agriculture Street in the heart of the Capital City, Sana'a, culminated in a shoot-out between police and the car thieves in Rawdha.
In the qat market located in the main square of Rawdha near the Grande Mosque of Rawdha and the local security administrative offices for the district of Bani Al-Harith and Sana'a Governorate, the police attempted to cordon off the escape paths of the thieves, who are said to have ran off with two Toyota Land Cruiser Lift Trucks.
According to eyewitnesses at the scene, the thieves, charged against one of the blocking Police Emergency (Opel) Sedans and opened fire into the vehicle personnel killing all four Police personnel inside it.
Return fire by other policemen in the area also led to the death of at least two of the escaping alleged Bedouin thieves and caused the assaulting vehicle to hit an electricity pole, at the southern end of the square, bringing it and its attached wires to the ground. Another pole near the mosque was also reported to have been damaged.
The casualties reported ranged from six to eight fatalities and about four wounded from the police, thieves and bystanders, who happened to be in the area.
The barrage of gunfire that ensued in the exchange caused a panic amongst the many people who were buying their qat from the several parked vehicles in the makeshift market, or waiting for the Noon Prayers by the mosque, and luckily most of them escaped harm, in the nearby alleyways and behind the walled entrance ways and yards of nearby houses and buildings.
A woman was reported to have been wounded in one of her thighs. At time of posting, it could not be determined if the remaining alleged thieves were later apprehended and the exact casualty count was not officially confirmed.