SANAA (Agencies): Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh on Wednesday said he will not seek another term in office, in a move that would end his three decade rule in the Arab country. His term expires in 2013.

Saleh also determined not to pass on the reins of government to his son and asked the Opposition to hold down protests.
"I present these concessions in the interests of the country. The interests of the country come before our personal interests," Saleh told his parliament, Shoura Council and members of the military.

"No extension, no inheritance, no resetting the clock," he said, making reference to ruling party proposals to institute term limits that had been seen as allowing him to run again.

The decision comes a day before a planned large rally, dubbed a "Day of Rage," organised by the opposition that was seen as a barometer of the size and strength of the Yemeni people's will to follow Egypt and Tunisia in demanding a change of government.

"I call on the opposition to freeze all planned protests, rallies and sit-ins," Saleh said.

Yemen is trying to fight a resurgent al Qaeda arm, cement peace with Shi'ite rebels in the north and quell separatism in the south, all in the face of crushing poverty that has left a third of Yemenis suffering from chronic hunger.

Yemen's current rules would require Saleh to step down as President when his term ends in 2013. But some members of his ruling party riled the opposition late last year by floating a proposal to lift that limit.