Tag Archive: Arab Spring



Protesters throw stones during clashes with riot police close to a tax office in Ettadhamen, Tunisia, 5 kms (3 miles) from Tunis, Friday, Jan. 10, 2014. Protesters throw stones during clashes with riot police close to a tax office in Ettadhamen, Tunisia, 5 kms (3 miles) from Tunis, Friday, Jan. 10, 2014.


Scattered protests over economic hardships have broken out as Tunisia’s new prime minister takes office to lead a caretaker administration to end a crisis three years after its uprising ousted Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali.

Tunisia’s 2011 revolt and the region-wide Arab Spring uprisings were triggered by a street vendor in Sidi Bouzid setting himself alight in an act of protest.

After months of crisis, the Islamist party which came to power after the revolt resigned this week to make way for Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa’s technocrat government until elections this year to complete Tunisia’s democratic transition.

Many Tunisians are more worried about the high cost of living, jobs and economic development. Protesters have taken to the streets this week in southern cities to protest against fiscal reforms including a vehicle tax hike.

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Thousands of protesters in Istanbul clashed with police in the most violent rally Turkey has seen in years. Hundreds have been injured and dozens arrested in fierce rioting which the media has dubbed the Turkish Spring as it spreads across the country. FOLLOW LIVE UPDATES: http://on.rt.com/2dow77 PHOTO GALLERY: http://on.rt.com/3fto6s



Activists in Tel Aviv protest police violence in Turkey

Bearing signs reading ‘Occupy Gezi,’ 50 people demonstrate outside Turkish Embassy

June 2, 2013, 10:05 pm
Demonstrators outside the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv in solidarity with protesters in Taksim Square. (photo credit: Ricky Ben-David/Times of Israel staff)

Demonstrators outside the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv in solidarity with protesters in Taksim Square. (photo credit: Ricky Ben-David/Times of Israel staff)

Though it paled in comparison to the throngs gathered in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, several dozen protesters on Sunday evening gathered outside the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv in a symbolic act of solidarity with the Turkish people.

Demonstrators outside the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv in solidarity with protesters in Taksim Square. (photo credit: Ricky Ben David/Times of Israel staff)

Demonstrators protest against Turkish government policies outside the Turkish Embassy in Tel Aviv, Sunday, June 2 (photo credit: Ricky Ben-David/Times of Israel staff)

Holding aloft placards in Turkish and English and waving a black flag, the small crowd of human rights activists chanted slogans in Hebrew against Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and denounced police violence against peaceful protesters.

“Enough with the violence by the state and the police,” they said. ”Democracy or rebellion,” said others.

Asaf Nisan Guler, a young Turkish-Israeli citizen, gave his opinion:
“I’m speaking to my friends in Turkey who are out protesting; they are not afraid, their hearts are transformed. They are against oppression in their country. The way the government handled the protests was wrong, violent, fascist, illegitimate … all those things.

“I don’t think this is a Turkish Spring, not quite yet. Not like the Arab Spring, which was some sectors of society against others. The Turkish protesters are peaceful; they don’t do provocations … they just want the oppression to stop. I don’t see it turning into something like the Arab Spring. Turkey is, after all, an established democracy.”


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Turkish People victory against Erdogan Government, Police withdraw from Taksim Square

Date and Time:2 June 2013 – 8:23

turkey2Police in Istanbul have withdrawn from Taksim Square, allowing the mass protest to continue unabated, Turkish media report. Istanbul and Ankara are entering the third day of violent protests, with tear gas and water cannon deployed and over 900 arrested.


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This is extremely bad news for Israel – and for Europe. The powers to be must learn to connect the dots and stop being fools anymore. The West needs to bar Qatar and other Arab countries from doing business in the entire Western region all together; block investments, stop visas to Arabs, stop oil trade, stop and ban Qatar (and anyone else) from funding mosques all across Europe, U.S., Australia and Canada – and stop all permissions for mosque building.

Qatar Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani: spreading the Salafi movement and madrassah’s across Europe, while ‘investing’ to ease red tape and build contacts for quicker approvals and access.


Qatar is one of the driving forces behind Salafi (khilāfa) movement through funding in the Middle East (Arab Spring) and underground movement across the Western world. While Christians are being subject to mass persecution across the Middle East, and churches are now to be banned completely, Qatar’s emir has promised to “spread Islam at all costs” outside of Islamic countries and are spending billions to build mosques and madrassah’s across Europe.


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Published on Mar 31, 2013

A former US official says Jordan’s King Abdullah has not instituted any reform promised and this is making the country increasingly susceptible to uprising.

In the background of this Jordan’s King Abdullah II has sworn in a new cabinet amid fresh street protests calling again for reforms. To date promises made to reform have not been fulfilled and observers think uprising is brewing in the Kingdom of Jordan. Jordan has been the scene of protests for political and economic reform since 2011.

Press TV has interviewed Michael Maloof, former Pentagon Official, Washington about this issue.



Jordan’s King Abdullah swears in new government


BBC News

Jordanian Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, 30 March 2013 Abdullah Ensour, seen as a reformist, cut fuel subsidies late last year

King Abdullah of Jordan has sworn in the smallest government in four decades, to be led by reformist Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour.

The king consulted parliament over the cabinet’s make-up for the first time, after constitutional changes introduced in the wake of the Arab Spring.

Mr Ensour has merged several portfolios as he tries to cut spending.

Jordan is facing a $3bn deficit this year, which it hopes to cut by about a third.

The country is struggling to curb the impact of soaring fuel import costs and high social spending designed to deter the kind of uprising seen in neighbouring Arab states, the BBC’s Dale Gavlak reports from Amman.

Mr Ensour, who was serving as interim prime minister before elections in January, ended fuel subsidies late last year.

The move triggered protests around the country, with some calling for the king to step down.


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Jordan: King Abdullah swears in reformist cabinet to push austerity measures

New finance minister supports unpopular reforms as Jordan king makes rare consultations

    • Reuters
    • Published: 12:47 March 31, 2013
    • Gulf News
Jordan's King Abdullah

  • Image Credit: AP
  • Jordan’s King Abdullah

Amman: Jordan’s King Abdullah swore in a reformist government on Saturday tasked with pushing through austerity measures required under a loan agreement with the International Monetary Fund.

The cabinet lineup was confirmed after nearly three weeks of unprecedented consultations led by Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour, who himself was reappointed on March 9 after the king canvassed members of parliament.

The monarch’s rare consultations follow constitutional changes devolving powers away from the palace — a response to calls for reform prompted by uprisings across the Arab world and smaller scale protests inside Jordan.

King Abdullah previously hand-picked his prime ministers without consulting parliament and the 150-member assembly did not play a role in forming governments.

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The cabinet announced on Saturday was the smallest in four decades, with 18 ministers.

The appointment of former central bank governor Umayya Toukan as finance minister signalled a desire by lawmakers to press ahead with unpopular reforms sought by the IMF in return for a $2 billion loan (Dh7.34 billion). US-educated Toukan is a strong advocate of fiscal steps to reduce years of overspending by successive governments.


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By Julian Pecquet – 03/09/13 12:00 PM ET

Secretary of State John Kerry had hoped to offer considerably more aid to Egypt than the $250 million he announced during his trip to Cairo but was blocked by Congress, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce (R-Calif.) said.

“This is not the aid package that the administration wanted to announce,” Royce told The Hill. The administration wanted to release a “larger sum,” but bowed to the wishes of Royce’s committee as well as congressional appropriators, he said.Royce wouldn’t say how much Kerry had hoped to announce, but the State Department has been pressing Congress to greenlight $450 million in direct aid since last fall.

“Our approach is not the full-throttle administration approach of delivering all the aid that they wanted to deliver, but rather a measured approach of tying tranches to results as it pertains to the peace treaty with Israel, to cooperation with respect to smuggling [into Gaza] and with respect to economic reforms to guarantee civil rights and the rule of law within Egypt,” he said. “That’s the pressure that we’re applying.”

Kerry announced the new aid package last Sunday during a stop in Cairo as part of his first trip overseas. The money includes $190 million in budgetary support that’s part of the $1 billion in debt relief President Obama pledged in 2011, along with $60 million for an enterprise fund.

The aid, Kerry said, was a “good-faith effort to spur reform and help the Egyptian people at this difficult time.”

The $190 million comes from the $450 million cash transfer the administration proposed last year to give to Egypt to shore up an economy hammered by the Arab Spring. That money would be culled from funds left over from past Egypt appropriations going back to 2006 (the country gets $1.3 billion in military aid and another $250 million in economic aid every year under the terms of the 1978 Camp David accords leading to peace with Israel).

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Kerry Says U.S. to Give Egypt $250 Million Amid Mursi Pledges

By Nicole Gaouette – Mar 3, 2013 3:13 PM CT

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, during his first trip to Egypt in the role, said yesterday that the U.S. government will release $250 million of a pledged $1 billion in aid to the country in response to commitments by President Mohamed Mursi to make economic and political changes.

The announcement followed a meeting in Cairo yesterday with Mursi and is part of “a good-faith effort to spur reform and help the Egyptian people at this difficult time,” Kerry said in a statement.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s 24-hour visit was meant to help Egypt break out of political and economic paralysis as it heads toward April elections that the secular opposition plans to boycott. Photographer: Jacquelyn Martin/AFP/Getty Images

Kerry’s 24-hour visit was meant to help Egypt break out of political and economic paralysis as it heads toward April elections that the secular opposition plans to boycott. The standoff has complicated Egypt’s attempts to enact changes required for a $4.8 billion International Monetary Fund loan.

Kerry urged Egyptians to hold transparent elections and respect rights and freedoms, particularly of women and religious minorities.

“Over the past couple of days in Egypt, I have listened to a broad cross-section of political leaders, business leaders and representatives of non-governmental organizations,” Kerry said. “The people I met shared their deep concern about the political course of their country, the need to strengthen human rights protections, justice and the rule of law, and their fundamental anxiety about the economic future of Egypt,” he said.

Egyptian Exports

Kerry also announced a decision to expand a program that allows Egyptian companies to export products from qualifying zones to the U.S. tariff-free. The zones are mostly along the border with Israel and the goods must include 10 percent Israeli content, said a U.S. official traveling with Kerry who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The official said that in Kerry’s talks, business leaders, NGOs and government officials all recognized that Egypt’s political crisis, its economic woes, and the challenge of qualifying for the IMF loan were linked.


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Why didn’t CNN’s international arm air its own documentary on Bahrain’s Arab Spring repression?

A former CNN correspondent defies threats from her former employer to speak out about self-censorship at the network

A Bahraini protester

A Bahraini protester in Manama. Photograph: Mohammed Al-Shaikh/AFP/Getty Images

In late March 2011, as the Arab Spring was spreading, CNN sent a four-person crew to Bahrain to produce a one-hour documentary on the use of internet technologies and social media by democracy activists in the region. Featuring on-air investigative correspondent Amber Lyon, the CNN team had a very eventful eight-day stay in that small, US-backed kingdom.

By the time the CNN crew arrived, many of the sources who had agreed to speak to them were either in hiding or had disappeared. Regime opponents whom they interviewed suffered recriminations, as did ordinary citizens who worked with them as fixers. Leading human rights activist Nabeel Rajab was charged with crimes shortly after speaking to the CNN team. A doctor who gave the crew a tour of his village and arranged meetings with government opponents, Saeed Ayyad, had his house burned to the ground shortly after. Their local fixer was fired ten days after working with them.

The CNN crew itself was violently detained by regime agents in front of Rajab’s house. As they described it after returning to the US, “20 heavily-armed men”, whose faces were “covered with black ski masks”, “jumped from military vehicles”, and then “pointed machine guns at” the journalists, forcing them to the ground. The regime’s security forces seized their cameras and deleted their photos and video footage, and then detained and interrogated them for the next six hours.

Lyon’s experience both shocked and emboldened her. The morning after her detention, newspapers in Bahrain prominently featured articles about the incident containing what she said were “outright fabrications” from the government. “It made clear just how willing the regime is to lie,” she told me in a phone interview last week.

But she also resolved to expose just how abusive and thuggish the regime had become in attempting to snuff out the burgeoning democracy movement, along with any negative coverage of the government.

“I realized there was a correlation between the amount of media attention activists receive and the regime’s ability to harm them, so I felt an obligation to show the world what our sources, who risked their lives to talk to us, were facing.”

CNN’s total cost for the documentary, ultimately titled “iRevolution: Online Warriors of the Arab Spring”, was in excess of $100,000, an unusually high amount for a one-hour program of this type. The portion Lyon and her team produced on Bahrain ended up as a 13-minute segment in the documentary. That segment, which as of now is available on YouTube, is a hard-hitting and unflinching piece of reporting that depicts the regime in a very negative light.

Amber Lyon, former CNN report

Amber Lyon on CNN, commenting on the March 2011 repression in Bahrain

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Amber Lyon’s iRevolution documentaries Egypt, Bahrain, Tunisia, …

Dictators Sponsor CNN | Interview with Amber Lyon

Published on Oct 3, 2012

Abby Interviews former CNN Investigative Journalist, Amber Lyon, about CNN’s corrupt media empire, calling into question a media establishment where censorship can be bought.

Former CNN Reporter (Amber Lyon) threatened & silenced by CNN reveals CNN Lies & War Propaganda

Published on Oct 9, 2012

‘Real Arab Spring in Bahrain which West ignores’

Published on Aug 16, 2012

Bahraini Human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has been sentenced to three years in jail for “participation in an illegal assembly” and “calling for a march without prior notification.” – READ MORE http://on.rt.com/y95tqy

Patrick Henningsen, who’s a geopolitical analyst, believes human rights chaos in Bahrain is beneficial for Western states.

Bahrain uprising anniversary: Worst clashes in months

Published on Feb 14, 2013

http://www.euronews.com/ Two years after their Arab Spring uprising against Bahrain’s ruling family, protesters have been back on the streets in what they said was a day of civil disobedience.

Security forces fired warning shots to try to disperse a crowd of youths gathered in a village near the capital Manama.

They killed a teenager and several others were injured during the most violent clashes in months.

Thousands of people were arrested during the first uprising in early 2011. Dozens of political prisoners are still in jail.

Of those originally detained, seven prisoners have been interviewed by Amnesty International at Bahrain’s Jaw prison.

All of them say they’ve been jailed on false charges or under laws that repress basic rights. Many were allegedly tortured in the first weeks of their arrests.

Human rights groups also claim security forces used excessive force two years ago.

Bahrain Shouting in the dark البحرين تصرخ في الظلام

Uploaded on Aug 4, 2011

Bahrain: An island kingdom in the Arabian Gulf where the Shia Muslim majority are ruled by a family from the Sunni minority. Where people fighting for democratic rights broke the barriers of fear, only to find themselves alone and crushed.

This is their story and Al Jazeera is their witness – the only TV journalists who remained to follow their journey of hope to the carnage that followed.

This is the Arab revolution that was abandoned by the Arabs, forsaken by the West and forgotten by the world.

Shouting in the dark can be seen from Thursday, August 4, at the following times GMT: Thursday: 2000; Friday: 1200; Saturday: 0100; Sunday: 0600; Monday: 2000; Tuesday: 1200; Wednesday: 0100; Thursday: 0600.

Arabic Translated:


Thursday, February 07, 2013

Opposition leader’s funeral brings day of reckoning for Tunisia

6:54pm EST
By Tarek Amara

TUNIS (Reuters) – Tunisia’s political crisis looked likely to deepen on Friday with strikes and protests planned around the funeral of assassinated opposition politician Chokri Belaid.

Belaid’s killing on Wednesday has brought thousands of people onto the streets of the capital Tunis and other cities in violence-marred protests.

Unions have called a general strike for Friday, setting the stage for further confrontation two years on from the pro-democracy revolution that inspired the Arab Spring.

Tunisia is riven by tensions between the dominant Islamists and their secular opponents, and by disillusionment over the lack of social progress since the overthrow of dictator Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali in January 2011.

In response to Belaid’s assassination, Prime Minister Hamdi Jebali, an Islamist, said on Wednesday he would dissolve the government, name a non-partisan cabinet of technocrats and hold early elections. But his partners opposed the move and it is yet to be approved by parliament.

No one has claimed responsibility for the killing of Belaid, a lawyer and secular political figure, who was shot by a gunman as he left home for work on Wednesday.


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Published on Jan 17, 2013

Phyllis Bennis: The revolutions of the Middle East are far from over in spite of reversals and manipulations


Founder and Director, Culture Collective

What started as a murmur in early October from First Nations People in Canada in response to Bill C45 has become a movement that echoes the sentiments of people all over the world, a battle cry of love for the planet, “Idle No More.” At first glance it might appear that this movement is isolated and doesn’t effect you if you are not native or if you don’t live in Canada, yet it does. It may appear that this resistance is not related to The Occupy Movement, The Arab Spring, The Unify Movement, Anonymous, or any of the other popular uprisings sparked by social unrest, but it is.

At its very core, all of these movements have very common threads and are born from common issues facing people everywhere. Those who represent financial interests that value money over life itself, that are devoid of basic respect for human decency, and for nature have dictated the future for too long and people everywhere are standing up to say, “No more.” This non-violent social uprising is viral in the minds and hearts of everyone across the planet determined to bring healing to our troubled communities, our planet, and the corruption that is eroding the highest places of governments around the world.

Image by Andy EversonFlashmobs with dancing and drumming at a malls in Olympia, Wash. Tempe, Ariz., Denver, Colo., a giant circle dance blocking a large intersection in Winnipeg, rail blockades in Quebec, this movement is using cultural expression combined with modern activism to get attention, and it is working. From their website, “Idle No More calls on all people to join in a revolution which honors and fulfills Indigenous sovereignty which protects the land and water. Colonization continues through attacks to Indigenous rights and damage to the land and water.”

Idle No More was started in October by four ladies; Nina Wilson, Sylvia McAdam, Jessica Gordon & Sheelah McLean who felt it was “urgent to act on current and upcoming legislation that not only affects First Nations people but the rest of Canada’s citizens, lands and waters.” On December 11 Attawapiskat Chief, Theresa Spence, launched a hunger strike requesting a face-to-face meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper to discuss broken treaties and protection of natural resources. Spence is staying in a tipi on the frozen Ottawa River facing Parliament Hill and has gained the support from many natives and non-natives who are in solidarity with this movement.

Chief Arvol Lookinghorse from South Dakota recently expressed his support in a letter posted on Facebook that states, “As Keeper of our Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe, I would like to send out support for the efforts of Chief Theresa Spence of the Attawapiskat First Nation, for giving of herself through fasting with prayers for the protection of Mother Earth.” He goes on to say,

This effort to protect Mother Earth is all Humanity’s responsibility, not just Aboriginal People. Every human being has had Ancestors in their lineage that understood their umbilical cord to the Earth, understanding the need to always protect and thank her. Therefore, all Humanity has to re-connect to their own Indigenous Roots of their lineage — to heal their connection and responsibility with Mother Earth and become a united voice… All Nations, All Faiths, One Prayer.

Society and nature work in similar ways to our own body’s immune system. We are given a symptom that causes us to be aware that there is an illness that needs to be addressed. We can try to suppress the symptom, but that does not heal the illness. Popular uprisings with very core commonalities are spreading all over the planet. Exploitation of our environment, as well as the exploitation of people and cultures for the sake of financial gain is immoral and must be stopped at the highest levels of our governments. It is possible to have a thriving economy and environmental ethics.

Here in America, the response to Occupy is tucked into NDAA as Washington prepares ways to suppress the symptoms of social discord. Without addressing the illness at its root nothing will change. It is like the mythical Many-Headed Hydra, if you cut one head off, two more will grow back. Popular uprisings will continue here and all over the world until leaders understand that people want real fundamental change in policy. Governments should lead by example if they want to be respected.


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Turkey Will Pay a High Price
After Assad

Syrian children from the northern Syrian town of Ras al-Ain are pictured near the Turkish border fence as gunfire is heard between the Free Syrian Army and the armed Kurds of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) in the northern Syrian town of Ceylanpinar, Nov. 25, 2012. (photo by REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh)

If we have to explain Turkey’s fundamental mistake in the Syria crisis, there is no better way than “putting all the eggs in one basket.” This is exactly what Turkey did by putting all its eggs in the basket of the Muslim Brotherhood and locked itself into the parameters of a zero-sum game.

About This Article

Summary :

By throwing its lot completely with Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood, Turkey will sustain costs whether Syrian President Bashar al-Assad stays or goes, writes Kadri Gursel.

Author: Kadri Gursel
posted on: Wed, Dec 26, 2012

Categories : Originals Turkey   Syria  

But a zero-sum game couldn’t be played in Syria. For Turkey to emerge from the Syrian conflict as a country collecting all the bonuses, the Muslim Brotherhood has to fully and absolutely dominate the entirety of Syria. The likelihood of this is close to zero.

Foreign-policy makers in Ankara, while putting all Turkish eggs into the Muslim Brotherhood basket, acted recklessly with extreme self-confidence, confident that the Baath regime will be toppled in a short time.

One reason why the neo-Islamist elite ruling Turkey today adopted an attitude that was far removed from realities was their underestimation of the institutional resistance capacity of the Baath regime against an uprising. This was a gross misjudgment.

But that wasn’t the only reason: There were also emotional instincts in play.

The AKP elite was in an unprecedented euphoria after seeing the Arab uprisings bring the Muslim Brotherhood to power in Egypt, and Islamists in two other Maghreb countries, while Sunnis were marching toward power in Syria. Here we have to take note that the AKP represents the Muslim Brotherhood traditions in Turkey.

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