A look at political unrest in the Middle East

AP News
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Posted: Mar 13, 2011 12:09 PM
A look at political unrest in the Middle East

A look at anti-government protests, political unrest and key developments in the Middle East on Sunday:

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LIBYA:

Troops loyal to Moammar Gadhafi shell the oil town of Brega in eastern Libya, pounding pockets of resistance during their swift advance on the country's poorly equipped and loosely organized rebels. Libyan state television reports that government troops retake Brega, but the report could not immediately be verified.

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YEMEN:

Police on rooftops fire live bullets and tear gas at protesters, injuring more than 100 people who were camping near Sanaa University, the latest in weeks of demonstrations calling for the Yemeni president to step down.

Wielding clubs and knives, police and government supporters also attack protesters on the ground.

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BAHRAIN:

Thousands of anti-government demonstrators cut off Bahrain's financial center and drive back police trying to push them from the capital's central square. For the tiny island kingdom it is the most disruptive protests since calls for more freedom erupted a month ago.

Demonstrators also clash with security forces and government supporters on the campus of the main university in the Gulf country, the home of the U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet.

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SAUDI ARABIA:

More than 200 protest outside the Interior Ministry to demand the release of detainees in the largest demonstration in the capital since the regional outbreak of pro-democracy unrest. Saudi authorities ban demonstrations and are increasingly determined to prevent the wave of unrest sweeping across the Middle East from spreading to the oil-rich Kingdom.

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LEBANON:

Tens of thousands of Lebanese fill a central Beirut square to mark the 2005 protests that ended Syria's 30-year domination of the country. They also demand that the militant group Hezbollah, seen as a proxy of Syria, give up its weapons.

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OMAN:

Oman's ruler grants lawmaking powers to officials outside the royal family in the boldest reforms yet aimed at quelling protests for jobs and a greater public role in politics. The decree by Sultan Qaboos bin Said reflects the scramble to appease demonstrators and head off possible wider unrest in the strategically important nation, which shares control of the Gulf waterway that carries 40 percent of the world's oil tanker traffic.

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TUNISIA:

Authorities order a curfew in a central mining town amid simmering unrest following a bout of deadly clashes between police and protesters. It's the latest sign of Tunisia's struggle to restore stability after a revolution that deposed an autocratic leader and sparked uprisings in the Arab world.