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SANAA, Yemen – Three army commanders, including a top general, defected Monday to the opposition calling for President Ali Abdullah Saleh to step down as army tanks and armored vehicles deployed in the streets of the Yemeni capital.
The most senior of the three officers is Maj. Gen. Ali Mohsen al-Ahmar, a longtime confidante of Saleh and commander of the army's powerful 1st Armored Division. Units of the division deployed Monday in a major square in Sanaa where protesters have been camping out to call for Saleh to step down.