France and Italy called Monday on Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to resign, with French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe saying he believed his departure was 'unavoidable.'
International outrage mounted after some 52 people died and hundreds were injured on Friday, as security forces attacked protesters calling for Saleh's ouster in the capital Sana'a.
'We say to Yemen, where the situation is worsening, we believe today that the departure of President Saleh is unavoidable,' Juppe said after a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels. His Italian counterpart, Franco Frattini, said the EU needed to take the same line it had taken with Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi after he was accused of shooting his own people - he was told then to 'relinquish power immediately.'
For more: Growing pressure from Europe for Yemeni leader to step down - Monsters and Critics