The Tunisia effect: where next?

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ocelot
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Mar 1 2011 17:29

Guardian, Whitaker: Saudi Arabia's subtle protests are serious

Mark.
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Mar 1 2011 20:41

Protests in Qatif on Friday

Mark.
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Mar 1 2011 22:20

Videos from Paul Mason

The dynamics of a modern revolution

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Uprisings have already inspired change in Egypt and Tunisia and revolutionary contagion is a well-established phenomenon, but could places such as Saudi Arabia, Iran and China really be next?

What role has social media played in the Middle East revolutions?

Mark.
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Mar 2 2011 12:36

Iraq

Sami Ramadani wrote:

As the walls of fear are being knocked down in one Arab country after another, the ugly concrete walls "of separation and intimidation" erected by the US-led forces in Iraqi cities have become a target of protesters. During last Friday's "day of rage", 29 people were killed by security forces. Another day of protest is planned for this Friday (4 March) "to honour the 29 martyrs". The regime's tactics – which include the shooting of peaceful demonstrators – show that the post-occupation edifice built by the US is not much different from the assortment of American-backed dictatorships across north Africa and the Middle East.

...

Extraordinary measures were taken to prevent people converging on the capital's Tahrir Square. All of Baghdad's many bridges over the Tigris – linking the two halves of the city – were closed, all vehicles and bicycles banned. New concrete blast walls sealed off Jamahiriya bridge, which leads to the hated Green Zone. A city of over 6 million people had been turned into a massive site for police and army encampments and fortifications.

For its part, the world's biggest US embassy – the power behind the throne – took the unprecedented step of broadcasting in Arabic, on state TV, a thinly veiled threat to protesters not to go too far in their demands. The US, it stressed, fully backed the "democratically elected" regime, while supporting the right to peaceful protest. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama must be pretty confused as to which dictatorship they should now abandon and which to prop up...

Mark.
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Mar 2 2011 12:40

Updates on Syria: http://syriaintransition.com/about/

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Entdinglichung
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Mar 3 2011 12:15

http://www.spsrasd.info/en/detail.php?id=16742

Quote:

OCCUPIED TERRITORIES / REPRESSION
Dozens of Sahrawis injured or arrested in clashes in occupied El Aaiun

El Aaiun (Occupied Territories), March 2, 2011 (SPS) - Dozens of Sahrawi citizens were injured or arrested in the occupied city of El Aaiun, after the forceful intervention of the Moroccan forces to disperse a sit-in, calling for the immediate and unconditional release of all Saharawi political prisoners languishing in Moroccan prisons.

The clashes resulted in injuries including: Deidi Yazid (elderly), his daughter Degna, Soulmani Mohamed Ali, Ahmed Deya, Houssein Soueilem, Habib Salhi, Albouhmadi Mouloud, Mahmoud Houssein, Ahmed Salem al-Khalil, Nafii Deya, Vala, Sarakh Zeina and Zubair Hassana, according to a preliminary assessment released by the Ministry of Occupied Territories and Saharawi Communities Abroad.

Eyewitnesses reported seeing plainclothes elements, suspected of belonging to the police forces, brutally tortured the Saharawi, the source indicated. (SPS)

062/090/TRA 021 600 MARCH 11 SPS

Mark.
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Mar 4 2011 12:02

Saudi Facebook activist planning protest shot dead (unconfirmed report?)

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Saudi activists alleged Wednesday that state security shot dead a leading online activist, who was calling for a 'Day of Rage' on March 11 in the oil-rich kingdom.

Faisal Ahmed Abdul-Ahadwas, 27, was believed to be one of the main administrators of a Facebook group that is calling for protests similar to that have swept North Africa and the Middle East.

The Facebook group, which has over 17,000 members, is calling for nationwide protests and reforms, including that governors and members of the upper house of parliament be elected, the release of political prisoners, greater employment, and greater freedoms.

Online activists said they believe Abdul-Ahadwas was killed by state security and that his body was taken by authorities to 'hide evidence of the crime.'

They argued he was killed because of 'his commitment to a better future for his country.'

Although these allegations could not independently verified, the religiously and socially-conservative kingdom has moved in recent days to quell a possible uprising similar to those in nearby Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Bahrain and Yemen…

Reuters

Quote:
Around 100 Saudi Shi'ites staged a protest in Saudi Arabia's oil-producing Eastern Province on Thursday, demanding the release of prisoners they say are being held without trial, witnesses said.

Mostly young men marched through the small town of Awwamiya, near the Shi'ite centre of Qatif on the Gulf coast...

EA liveblog

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1127 GMT: Eyewitnesses tell a CNN reporter that a protest is happening now in Saudi Arabia in the Eastern Province town of Al-Hassa, calling for the release of Shi'ite prisoners.
Mark.
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Mar 4 2011 11:05

Report on Morocco from CGT North Africa

Oleada represiva en Marruecos

machine translation

Mark.
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Mar 5 2011 23:07

Angola, 7 March

Angola: calls for a revolution

Mark.
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Mar 6 2011 11:12

Iran

Labour protests in Tabriz and Tehran

Quote:
More than 1,800 construction workers at Tabriz Petrochemical Complex have been staging labour protests since Thursday March 3, while in Tehran, hundreds of workers reach their fifth day of protests at Kian Tyre factory.

The Iranian Labour News Agency (ILNA) reports that workers at Tabriz Petrochemical Complex are demonstrating against hiring practices and in favour of improved benefits and higher wages that keep up with inflation.

According to ILNA, Tabriz Petrochemical Complex was one of Iran’s 100 most profitable companies last year. In the northwest region of the country, it ranks third in size and profitability.

In the meantime, the opposition website Saham News reports that labour protests have been underway at Kian Tyre Factory since March1.

The report indicates that hundreds of workers and their families have been staging sit-ins in front of the factory. Human rights websites report that "workers at this factory have been gathering inside the factory, putting up protest banners on the plant’s fences and chanting protest slogans around a bonfire."

The workers are reportedly calling for job security, an end to child labour and the release of incarcerated labour activists.

rooieravotr
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Mar 6 2011 15:05

Facebook action call in Portugal...

Samotnaf
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Mar 7 2011 07:37

This newish development reported on March 1st, about Tanzania, is possibly the beginning of something new there (though I know nothing about the situation in Tanzania, so maybe someone reading this could elaborate a bit):

Quote:
Mwanza — The Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo's (Chadema) 'people power' slogan last week captivated residents of the Lake Zone regions, who could not resist putting their different political ideologies aside.... people from all walks of life turned out to a series of demonstrations and rallies organised by Chadema.
The demonstrations were indeed not for Chadema members and supporters alone, but rather for all Tanzanians, who intended to vet their fury against the ever rising cost of living, erratic power, grand corruption, haphazard ammunition explosions and you name it....
A number of demonstrators carrying banners with some of the placards portraying strong messages some in an abusive language against the government and CCM did not prevent the demonstrations from being held peacefully... a similar Chadema demonstration ... left three innocent people killed and about 30 others injured on January 5, this year.
Thousands of hands were raised each time the Chadema national chairman, Mr Freeman Mbowe, and the party's secretary-general, Dr Willibrod Slaa, dared to ask the crowds if they would support a revolt as is the case with Tunisia, Egypt and Libya.
With the exception of less defiant and rebellious messages, Furahisha and Mukendo grounds in the city and municipality, respectively, temporarily turned into Cairo's Tahrir Square.
The demonstrations prompted analysts to ponder over whether the North Africa's 'people power' can inspire the sub-Saharan Africa to remove malfunctioning governments from power.
Matthew Tostevin, a political analyst, argued that the dynamics of the sub- Saharan Africa are different from those of the North Africa.
Ethics dissection, less urbanised populace and poor communications make it hard for mass actions to successfully take place in sub-Saharan Africa, he said. Another analyst, Robert Mkosamali, a PhD candidate at Saint Augustine University of Tanzania (Saut), concurred with Tostevin.
The living condition in Tanzania though is worse compared to those in northern Africa, the 'people power' ideal is still premature in the East African country, he explained. The ongoing bickering among religions leaders in Tanzania, for instance, was not being dealt with constructively, he said, observing that some politicians were being victimised along those lines.
"We can see some of the so called 'religious leaders' tactfully teaming up to stop the public from holding leaders from their sects accountable," he explains. The Singida East MP, Mr Tundu Lissu, however, asserted that President Museveni's victory through vote rigging reflected the 'people power' fear haunting long-time dictators on the continent.
Thinking the rural populace was politically passive was not only incorrect, but ignored vivid evidence, he says, arguing that Chadema had been performing well in rural constituencies in general elections' history of Tanzania.
Citing the Kigoma North MP, Mr Kabwe Zitto, and the former Karatu MP, Dr Willibrod Slaa, Mr Lissu said urbanisation could not inhibit 'people power'.
The shadow chief whip said time would tell if the ongoing bickering among religious leaders would have any significance in 'people power'. "Mind you, it is the same Tanzanians, who jointly fought against colonialism and played pivotal role in sub-Saharan Africa's liberation and the fight against apartheid.
"It is just because they are not yet that much angry. I assure you, these people will jointly rise again when they are fed up with what is happening in the country," he said.Standing by the size and mood of the crowds that took to the streets in Mwanza, the fury Mr Lissu is predicting probably is still not yet born in Tanzanians' minds.

- from here.

rooieravotr
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Mar 7 2011 15:49

Swaziland...

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"This is the time we have to regroup. In fact, we have to stand up now and fight the enemy. The enemy here is the system of governance. Change is inevitable in the country. Let the government consider happenings in Libya, Yemen, Tunisia and Egypt. Don’t say such things cannot happen in Swaziland. A revolution is an easy thing," said Dumisani Ndlangamandla.
Mark.
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Mar 11 2011 11:11

Angola - around 20 people arrested in the early hours of the morning ahead of today's protest in Luanda, including journalists from Novo Jornal and rapper Brigadeiro Mata Frakus

AFP: Angola on standby for protests

Quote:
Soldiers patrolled the Angolan capital on Sunday as Angolans watched to see if plans for a Monday mass protest against the 31-year rule of President Jose Eduardo dos Santos would materialise.

Since last month, rumours have been circulating on the Internet of north Africa-style protests scheduled to begin on March 7.

Many have dismissed the anonymous call to protest as a charade, but the ruling party, the Popular Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), has treated it as a credible threat, organising large pro-government demonstrations Saturday in Luanda and several other cities in a bid to show its strength...

Edit: protests fail to materialise after arrests

Edit: from the Guardian

Quote:
Monday's short-lived protest in Luanda is in no way comparable with the extraordinary scenes witnessed in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Very few protesters showed up. However, people in Luanda say the atmosphere was extremely tense. There was a heavy police presence throughout the city and most people stayed at home fearing trouble…

In a bid to bolster confidence and outmanoeuvre the critics, MPLA officials organised pre-emptive "pro-peace" rallies across the country on Saturday. State radio said 500,000 supporters took to the streets of Luanda waving MPLA flags, wearing MPLA T-shirts and drinking MPLA-funded beer and fizzy drinks. The Associated Press estimated a lower figure of 20,000 participants. Whatever the number, this was not an authentic outpouring of adoration for the regime. State employees were ordered to attend, and beyond the capital all did not go well. For example, in the north-east diamond-rich province of Lunda Norte, MPLA supporters were attacked by other members of the public, and the provincial governor, Ernesto Muangala, fled to safety...

Komar
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Mar 7 2011 18:03

Remember protests in Sulemanyeh, Iraqi Kurdistan for a few weeks ago? well the people have been gathering in The "maydany Azadi" évery single day since then.

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Today was day Twenty of Protest here in Sualimany, Iraqi Kurdistan. The Protesters held their protest as usual at Maidany Azadi, meanwhile, down two street from the square, in front of PUK headquarter (Patriotic Union of Kurdistan), about a hundred feet from KDP’s headquarter in which the shooting of the Protesters on February 17th took place, the supporters of PUK held their own rally.

Sulemanyeh

http://themovingsilent.wordpress.com/

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Mar 8 2011 13:18

Kuwait

Quote:
1.09pm - Kuwait:

Photograph: Mixa/Getty Images/MIXA A planned day of protest in Kuwait has seen a peaceful start with Kuwaitis handing out watermelons to MPs heading into parliament. The Associated Press explains:

The significance was not spelled out, but in local parlance, a person who has a lack of understanding or holds an unrealistic point of view sometimes is called a watermelon.

In Kuwait, six members of the Kuwaiti youth group Kafi (Enough), gave watermelons to a few lawmakers as a signal of their political dissatisfaction in a country that has the most outspoken parliament in the Gulf Arab region.

The demonstration marked a tempered start to a planned day of unauthorised protests by youth groups demanding the removal of Prime Minister Sheikh Nasser al-Mohammad al-Sabah, a member of the ruling family, and greater political freedom.

A potentially larger rally was expected later, inspired by spreading Arab protests that toppled leaders in Tunisia and Egypt before sparking the insurrection in Libya and spreading to other Gulf countries including Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia

Mark.
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Mar 8 2011 21:59

I’m Syrian and I’m jealous

Syrian support for Gaddafi?

Mark.
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Mar 8 2011 22:00

Morocco

Mark.
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Mar 8 2011 22:42

Iraq

Quote:
URGENT. Call for action regarding 3 young media people arrested in Baghdad 7 March.

Three young reporters were arrested yesterday around midday after attending Monday's demo to report. 

It is unknown where these three people are being held.

The demo was about jobs, labour rights and political reforms, end to corruption and basic services.

Iraqis are exercising their rights, as enshrined by Iraq's constitution, demanding job opportunities, political reforms and end to corruption. They are not calling for the overthrow the state.

They left Tahrir Square around midday heading home but they never got to their homes.

Their families tried to phone them several times but got no answer,

The names of the three young reporters are: 

Maan Thamer Ismail 
Ali Saihood
Ali Abd-Al Zahra

They were arrested by the Iraqi security forces. 

Please send letters of protests to the government of Iraq demanding the immediate release.

They committed no crimes except doing their jobs and exercising democratic rights guaranteed by Iraq’s constitution. 

Please help if you can.


Abdullah

GFIW [General Federation of Iraqi Workers]

Samotnaf
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Mar 9 2011 07:05

Possible food riots predicted in the USA:

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commodities of all kinds are soaring...It was ... in November ’10, that Agricultural prices began to explode higher...
This in turn has resulted in riots and revolutions worldwide. Already we’ve seen this occur in Tunisia, Algeria, the Ivory Coast, Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, Iran, and now Saudi Arabia. We’ve also seen the start of this in China....
The reasons the US hasn’t been gripped by riots are the following:
1) The security nets (food stamps, welfare, etc) continue to keep lower income Americans afloat… for now.
2) Food in the US is so processed that increases in agricultural prices don’t pass through as rapidly into higher food prices.
Neither of this will last much longer. Regarding #1, the US Government is broke. In fact they’re so broke than an aid to Nancy Pelosi (who I can’t stand) has revealed that the US Government might actually shut down at some point in the near future.
As for #2, commodities will be spiking even higher
Samotnaf
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Mar 9 2011 21:54

UK?:

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LONDON (AP) - A senior economist at HSBC has warned that Britain could experience riots if food prices continue to soar in line with the cost of crude oil.
Karen Ward told Sky News that amid "very low" wage growth in the developed world, failing to compensate workers for recent rises in food and energy prices could provoke social unrest in the U.K.
Energy markets - where prices are near their highest levels since 2008 as battles rage in oil-rich Libya - are "a significant contributor" to higher food prices, Ward told Sky Tuesday.
Food price inflation has helped spark the uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East that toppled longstanding rulers in Tunisia and Egypt.
Last week, the United Nations said food costs are at their highest point since the agency began tracking them 20 years ago.

squaler
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Mar 10 2011 08:21

http://www.dibussi.com/2011/03/cameroon-bans-twitter-via-sms.html

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Mar 10 2011 10:20

Burkina Faso: http://juralibertaire.over-blog.com/article-burkina-faso-les-eleves-sur-les-sentiers-de-la-liberte-68989412.html

Samotnaf
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Mar 10 2011 10:33

Report here on Burkina Faso in English:

Quote:
Africa: Burkina Faso: Protests Over Deaths
Students in Burkina Faso demonstrated in several cities to protest the deaths of a student in police custody last month and of other marchers killed in later protests, according to a local human rights group.

Mark.
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Mar 10 2011 11:30

Reforms promised in Morocco

Mark.
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Mar 10 2011 11:49

AJE on Iraqi Kurdistan

Mark.
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Mar 10 2011 13:09

Why Syria is not next ... so far

Quote:
As millions of Arabs stir their respective countries with demonstrations and slogans of change and transition, certain Arab states have been generally spared, including some oil rich countries and Syria. Syria stands out as a powerful regional player without the benefit of economic prosperity and with a domestic political climate that leaves a lot to be desired. Some say it combines the heavy-handedness of the Tunisian regime, the economic woes of Egypt, the hereditary rule aspects of Morocco and Jordan, and a narrower leadership base than any other country across the Arab world. Why, then, is all relatively quiet on the Syrian front? ... 
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ocelot
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Mar 11 2011 11:35

Kuwait

Guardian/Reuters

Quote:
10.53am: Reuters reports on unrest in Kuwait:

Kuwait riot police fired tear gas on Friday to break up a small, peaceful demonstration by stateless Arabs, who were demanding greater rights in the small, oil-rich Gulf nation.
Police in protective gear advanced on around 200 protesters who had gathered in a district of Kuwait City following morning prayers. They then fired volleys of tear gas at the crowd, sending the group running for cover.

Mark.
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Mar 12 2011 16:22

Azerbaijan

Quote:
Several hundred opposition protesters held a rally in downtown Baku for a second day today, RFE/RL's Azeri Service reports.

The protesters chanted slogans against President Ilham Aliyev, calling for his resignation. They also demanded the authorities release youth activists arrested in recent days...

The demonstration in Baku follows the March 11 rally organized by Azeri youth activists via Facebook. Inspired by popular uprisings in Egypt, Tunisia, and other Arab nations...

Is Azerbaijan ready for its own revolution?

Mark.
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Mar 12 2011 16:32

Armenia