Updates on Protests in the Middle East and North Africa

The Telegraph: Libya

Meanwhile, the government in Tripoli has shut down a range of media, including internet providers, social networking sites and the signals of western news channels.

Facebook and the website of Al-Jazeera, the international Arab TV network, were among the first to go, with journalists were also being refused entry into the country.

Libya itself is one of the biggest oil and gas exporters in the world, with companies like BP cashing in on its reserves following a recent period of detente with the west.

However, the unemployment rate is at 30 per cent, housing is in short supply, and there is no recognised political opposition whatsoever.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/libya/8336467/Libya-protests-foreign-mercenaries-using-heavy-weapons-against-at-demonstrators.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/libya/8337458/Libyan-protests-reach-Tripoli-as-Gaddafi-son-warns-of-civil-war.html

latest updates

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/libya/8339096/Libya-Colonel-Gaddafi-flees-to-Venezuela-as-cities-fall-to-protesters.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/libya/8341567/Libya-Col-Gaddafi-damns-the-rats-as-he-clings-to-power.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/libya/8344034/Libya-civil-war-breaks-out-as-Gaddafi-mounts-rearguard-fight.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/libya/8337670/Libya-protests-live.html

France 24: Morocco

Analysts say Morocco, with a reformist monarch who is widely respected, and a growing economy, is one of the Arab countries least likely to succumb to the wave of protests sweeping the region.

Slogans chanted at the protest included: “The people reject a constitution made for slaves!” and “The people want the autocracy down!”

 With heavy rain falling, people used plastic sheets as improvised raincoats.

 “This is a peaceful protest to push for constitutional reform, restore dignity and end graft and the plundering of public funds,” said Mustapha Muchtati of the Baraka (Enough) group, which helped organise the protest.

 The protest was initiated by a group calling itself the February 20 Movement for Change, which has attracted 19,000 followers on the social networking website Facebook.

 On the eve of the protest, a Moroccan youth movement said it was pulling out because of disagreements with Islamists and leftists.

http://www.france24.com/en/20110220-moroccan-protesters-call-for-curbs-king-powers-reform

USA TODAY / WORLD: Bahrain

But bitterness and tensions still run deep after seesaw battles that included riot police opening fire on protesters trying to reclaim a landmark square and then pulling back to allow them to occupy the site. At least seven people have been killed and hundreds injured since the Arab wave for change reached the Gulf on Feb. 14.Bahrain holds particular importance to Washington as the host of the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, which is the main U.S. military counterweight to Iran‘s efforts to expand its armed forces and reach into the Gulf. Bahrain’s ruling Sunni dynasty has strong backing from other Gulf Arab leaders, who fear that Shiite powerhouse Iran could gain further footholds through the uprising led by Bahrain’s Shiite majority.

 http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2011-02-20-bahrain-protests_N.htm

The Australian: Libya, Yemen, Algeria, Kuwait, Tunisia, Bahrain, …

Anti-government demonstrators rally as they re-occupy a key square Bahrain's Manama. Picture: Getty Images Source: Getty Images

 

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/renewed-unrest-sweeps-arab-world/story-e6frg6so-1226008876077

Additional sources:

The Gazette

http://www.montrealgazette.com/Yemen+separatist+leader+arrested/4317435/story.html

The Christian Science Monitor

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Foreign-Policy/2011/0219/US-faces-difficult-situation-in-Bahrain-home-to-US-Fifth-Fleet

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Middle-East/2011/0218/Yemen-awash-in-guns-wary-about-unrest

Yemeni demonstrators demand the resignation of President Ali Abdullah Saleh in Sanaa, Yemen, Friday. Muhammed Muheisen/AP

 

The Star

http://www.thestar.com/news/article/942041–which-country-could-fall-next?bn=1

Iraqi Kurds protest to demand the ouster of the local government and better basic services in Sulaimaniya, 260 km northeast of Baghdad, February 19, 2011. People protested for political reforms in Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region on Saturday while demonstrators in Baghdad rallied for the rights of widows and orphans. STRINGER/IRAQ/REUTERS

 

G. D. Williams       © 2011

 

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