Latest developments in Arab political unrest

AP News
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Posted: Jun 04, 2011 3:46 PM
Latest developments in Arab political unrest

YEMEN

Yemen's wounded president accepted an offer from the Saudi king to travel there for medical treatment for burns and wounds from a splintered pulpit that was blown apart in an opposition rocket attack. A flurry of conflicting reports about President Ali Abdullah Saleh's whereabouts and condition spread through the Middle East late Saturday after Yemeni government officials and opposition tribal leaders reported that Saudi King Abdullah had mediated a cease-fire in the raging conflict in Yemen. The capital and other areas of Yemen grew quiet for the first time in days after dawn, though the head of the tribal confederation battling Saleh's forces accused them of not observing the cease-fire.

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LIBYA

British Apache and French attack helicopters struck targets for the first time in NATO's campaign in Libya, hitting Moammar Gadhafi's troops near a key coastal oil town. Hours later, at least eight airstrikes were heard in Tripoli. Rebel leaders met with British Foreign Secretary William Hague in the rebels' de facto capital, Benghazi. Hague is one of the highest-ranking foreign officials to visit rebel-held territory in eastern Libya.

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SYRIA

Tanks rolled toward a tense central city mourning the deaths at least 65 protesters, reaching the outskirts hours after a funeral procession of thousands. The government lifted its stranglehold on the Internet, which has been key to motivating people to join the 11-week uprising. Troops killed at least six protesters in a northern town, according to the Local Coordination Committees, which helps organize and document the protests calling for an end to the regime of President Bashar Assad.

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TUNISIA

Fighting over unemployment erupted in a mining town in the southwest, killing five people and injuring 90. Tunisia's official TAP news agency said the clashes erupted in the mining town of Metlaoui after rumors surfaced about a change in the recruitment policies of the region's main employer.

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EGYPT

A former Egyptian finance minister was been sentenced in absentia to 30 years for squandering public funds and abusing his authority, the official state news agency said. Yousef Boutros-Ghali, a nephew of former U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, left Egypt during the uprising that forced out President Hosni Mubarak. Yousef Boutros-Ghali, whose location is unknown, was a powerful confidant of Mubarak's son Gamal. He was convicted of appropriating luxury vehicles seized from customs and of abusing his authority for using state print shops to produce campaign material.