May 10, 2011 |
Syrian security forces appear to be shifting their strategy for crushing the popular uprising against the rule of President Bashar Assad to a less bloody approach similar to that used effectively by its main ally, Iran, to end massive 2009 street protests. In recent days, Assad loyalists have curbed their use of live fire, which has left hundreds of Syrian civilians dead and many more friends, relatives and neighbors willing to avenge them. Instead, security forces are increasingly using nonlethal means such as tear gas, truncheons and waves of random and targeted arrests, just as Iranian authorities did to rein in the protests that followed the disputed reelection of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
May 6, 2011 |
Public dismay over Mexico's drug violence mixed with election-season jockeying have put President Felipe Calderon on the defensive amid finger-pointing over the carnage. Following the slaying of a poet's son and discoveries of hundreds of bodies in mass graves in northern Mexico, critics have stepped up charges that the conservative Calderon is the author of a failed anti-crime strategy. A massive demonstration to protest the country's rampant violence is planned Sunday in Mexico City.
April 22, 2011 |
Violent mass demonstrations across Syria's cities, towns and villages were met with indiscriminate gunfire by security forces loyal to President Bashar Assad, killing dozens of people and hardening the divide between a regime determined to keep power and increasingly fearless protesters demanding the overthrow of the government. Tens and perhaps hundreds of thousands of demonstrators poured into the streets of Syrian cities after weekly prayers on a day dubbed "Great Friday" by protest leaders.
April 13, 2011 |
For almost three decades he wielded unquestioned power, a seemingly invincible figure ruling with a sense of privilege and ruthlessness that epitomized autocrats across the Middle East. Even when mass protests improbably forced him from power in February, it appeared highly unlikely that Hosni Mubarak, long a key U.S. ally in a volatile region, would ever be held to account for allegations of corruption and abuse of office. But that all changed Wednesday, when authorities here confirmed the detention of the former Egyptian president and his two sons, a move immediately hailed by many as a surprising but shrewd step by the ruling military council to calm protests in the world's most populous Arab nation.
April 2, 2011 |
Violent repercussions of a Koran-burning at an obscure Florida evangelical church shook Afghanistan again Saturday, with authorities in the southern city of Kandahar reporting up to eight deaths in an angry street protest a day after an attack on the U.N. headquarters in a northern city left seven foreigners dead. Nerves were further jangled in the Afghan capital when a team of gunmen and at least one suicide bomber tried to storm an American-run military installation on Kabul's outskirts early Saturday.
February 28, 2011 |
The interim prime minister of the North African country that inspired the ongoing uprisings throughout the Arab world resigned Sunday after a new round of daily protests resulted in three weekend deaths. Interim President Fouad Mebazaa named Beji Caid Essebsi, a former foreign minister who served under Tunisia's long-ago President Habib Bourguiba, as new caretaker prime minister ahead of elections planned for the summer, state television reported. Prime Minister Mohamed Ghannouchi, who served in the same post under deposed President Zine el Abidine ben Ali, bowed to public pressure and unruly street protests demanding that any traces of the former regime be purged from public life.
February 27, 2011 |
Moammar Kadafi retained his grip on the Libyan capital Saturday, blocking entry to Tripoli with tanks and clearing the streets of protesters, but the strongman found himself beset by challenges to his control in the west of the country, and even his airspace. In one of the most dramatic developments of the day, two British military aircraft daringly flew into the country to rescue 150 oil workers and others from the desert in eastern Libya, a region now held by anti-government forces, officials in London said.
February 25, 2011 |
President Obama is challenging his administration to formulate a new Middle East policy that emphasizes political and economic reforms to bolster U.S. allies now threatened by the protest movements sweeping the region. Administration officials say Obama is urging beleaguered governments to enact reforms that would satisfy the popular craving for change while preserving valuable partnerships on crucial U.S. interests, from oil security to counter-terrorism and containing Iran. With those allied governments under pressure from their citizens, the U.S. is confronting the likelihood of having diminished influence over whatever political order emerges.
February 18, 2011 |
Thousands of Iranian government supporters gathered for a Friday prayer sermon rally meant to counter the resurgent opposition movement that staged a boisterous and scattered day of protests this week. But Iranian authorities Friday appeared to have backed off calls to execute Mir-Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi, the opposition leaders who called for the protests held Monday. The two reformist politicians, now under virtual house arrest, have called on supporters to head to the streets again Sunday.
January 27, 2011 |
Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate who formerly headed the U.N. nuclear regulatory agency, has returned to Egypt in a move expected to increase political pressure on President Hosni Mubarak as a new wave of nationwide protests are called for Friday. ElBaradei's presence has energized activists who for months had urged him to take his National Front for Change to the streets. His arrival coincides with a decision by the Muslim Brotherhood, the country's largest opposition group, to encourage its young members to join the protests.