The Day Of Rage Continues
EA rounds up protest video from Bahrain, Libya and beyond. Below are protesters in Libya destroying Muammar Qaddafi's Green Book, which outlines his political views, in Tobruk:
The Libyan security forces killed at least 24 protesters and wounded many others in a crackdown on peaceful demonstrations across the country, Human Rights Watch said today. ... Hundreds of peaceful protesters took to the streets on February 17, 2011, in Baida, Benghazy, Zenten, Derna, and Ajdabiya. According to multiple witnesses, Libyan security forces shot and killed the demonstrators in efforts to disperse the protests.
Nick Kristof's view of Bahrain:
As a reporter, you sometimes become numbed to sadness. But it is just plain heartbreaking to be in modern, moderate Bahrain today and watch as a critical American ally uses tanks, troops, guns and clubs to crush a peaceful democracy movement and then lie about it.
This kind of brutal repression is normally confined to remote and backward nations, but this is Bahrain. An international banking center. The home of an important American naval base, the Fifth Fleet. A wealthy and well-educated nation with a large middle class and cosmopolitan values.
Hadeel Al-Shalchi, a correspondent for the Associated Press in Bahrain, is also filing updates from her phone to Twitter on the new attack on protesters on Friday. About 30 minutes ago, she wrote that shots were fired at protesters trying to enter the Pearl Roundabout they had been cleared from in a deadly raid one day earlier.
She reported that the country's army was "firing live ammo from anti-aircraft guns from APC's at protesters" who were "carrying flowers."
Al Jazeera reports from Bahrain:
I met up with Rajab and other protesters and activists in Bani Jamrah. By the time I arrived, the group which included women and children, had finished marching and was milling about in front of neatly lined houses. Some held flags, others tried to walk to the roundabout that lie ahead, myself included, but none were actively demonstrating. This, however, did not stop the police from firing tear gas rounds at us. The first couple of times I choked a bit and my eyes burned, and I was given onions and rags dipped in vinegar to lessen the effects of the tear gas. As we attempted to walk towards the roundabout a second time, the police shot rubber bullets in our direction without warning. The cylindrical objects came flying at us from medium range about 15 at a time.
Meanwhile Scott Lucas describes Egypt today:
In contrast, Friday Prayers in Tahrir Square in Cairo has brought out hundreds of thousands of people in the "Day of Victory and Continuation". In the center of the square memorials were set up for the close to 400 people killed during the uprising against President Mubarak as demonstrators chanted, "The people demand the trial of the regime."
The Friday Prayer was led by prominent Muslim scholar Yusuf al-Qaradawi, his first public sermon since he was banned from leading weekly prayerst 30 years ago.
The Guardian provides a summary of events across the Middle East:
Bahrain: After the funerals of protesters killed in recent violence, demonstrators were expected to head back to Manama's Pearl roundabout. Tens of thousands turned out for the funeral of Mahmood abu Taki (see 10.30am). The protesters' demands seem to be getting more radical, with calls for the monarchy to be removed (see 11.33am).
Egypt: An estimated 1 million people have gathered in Tahrir Square in an event celebrating the fall of Hosni Mubarak and putting pressure on the army to include demonstrators in the country's transition to democracy (see 12.21pm). Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a controversial cleric, gave a strikingly non-sectarian speech.
Libya: Reports claim up to 50 people have been killed in anti-government protests in the east of the country but it is very hard to verify information from Libya. Reports claim al-Bayda has been taken over by anti-government protesters. But there was little sign of anti-Gaddafi feeling in Tripoli, where the Libyan leader paraded among crowds of supporters (see 12.17pm).
Yemen: Crowds are demonstrating against Ali Abdullah Saleh, the president, in the capital, Sana'a, and elsewhere. The biggest demonstration tens of thousands of people was in Taiz, where reports said eight people had been wounded by a hand grenade (see 12.12pm).
Jordan: Eight people have been injured in Amman in clashes between pro- and anti-government demonstrators (see 12.28pm).
Iran: There were calls for the execution of opposition leaders (see 12.03pm).