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Middle East unrest intensifies with updates from Yemen, Bahrain and Syria

Written By David D'Angelo on Thursday, March 24, 2011 | 3/24/2011

The unrest in the Middle East continues to intensify despite some developments. In Libya the bombardment of the Coalition forces continue on installations of Moammar Gadhafi. In Yemen, the embattled President Ali Abdullah Saleh vowed to step down next year and make necessary Constitutional reforms. Opposition in Yemen however rejected the proposal and demanded that he resigned immediately.

Saleh is using the Constitution as a shield saying that there are rules to follow and that only a group of minority is involved in the protest. Saleh had been a close ally of the United States particularly in preventing any al Qaeda advance in the Arab World.



The Al Qaeda in fact did an attempt to advance last Tuesday when they tried to attack the city of Lawdar, in Abyan province which is southwest of Yemen. Luckily the attack was repelled by the Yemen soldiers.

Yemeni army is becoming more fragile as well since there are recent defections to the opposition side. Besides key military officers tribal leaders and government officials are slowly showing their support for the opposition.

Protests in Syria is also increasing and a key Syrian activist, Loay Hussein who had been a political prisoner from 1984 to 1991 was arrested. Hundred of anti-government demonstrators marched in southern parts of the country last Tuesday.

Syrian government is being accused of using excessive force to quell the violence as two protesters who had been killed last week was buried. "The use of excessive force constitutes a clear violation of international law, which provides for individual criminal responsibility for violations committed," said Rupert Colville, spokesman for the U.N. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.



The al-Assad government is being accused of massive human rights abuses and are calling for political and economic reforms. Syria is the latest Arab nation who was affected by the ongoing protest in the Arab world.

Bahrain, is now being accused of targeting doctors in its campaign to quell a protest which the government said is a foreign plot to destabilize the country. It was widely rumored that Bahrain is indicating Iran in this pronouncement, sayung further that the plot had been in the making for more than two decades.

In defense for arresting doctors, a Bahrain official is saying that some of Bahrain's medical facilities, including Salmaniya Medical Complex, had been overrun by political and sectarian activity. He added that such activities are "totally unacceptable behavior by any standard."

Elsewhere, Palestine and Israel continued their exchange of air strikes. Four rockets were fired at Israel Wednesday which injured one man and caused Israel to counter it with their own missile attacks. The retaliatory attacks wounded two Palestinian militants. Among the casualties of the strike were two children according to Hamas security sources and Palestinian medical officials said.

CNN: An injured Palestinian girl lies on a hospital bed following an alleged Israeli military strike in Gaza City on Tuesday, March 2
Saudi Arabia had been arresting protesters in their own country as well. In the recent week they have also sent military support to Bahrain to help the country. The latest letter sent by the Yemeni president was also directed at the Saudis, perhaps a request for military assistance as well.

Oil prices are also being closely monitored since the unrest are likely to be ongoing for about sometime.



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