Libyan army guns down demonstrators, UK backs away from Bahrain

Soldiers in Libya and Bahrain have fired on demonstrators as authorities try to quell growing unrest, triggered after protesters toppled 30 year autocrats in Tunisia and Egypt.

Troops in Libya reportedly shot and killed at least 12 mourners in the city of Benghazi, after a group tried to storm a military barracks and throw firebombs into the compound on the way to the funeral. Opposition groups claimed up to 60 were killed, while one activist told the BBC that the regime was releasing prisoners from jail to attack the demonstrators.

The BBC reported that troops used mortars and 14.5mm heavy machine guns to repress the civilians, while Al-Jazeera reported that hospitals were running out of blood needed for emergency transfusions.

Al-Jazeera also reported an account from a cleric in Benghazi, who witnessed a tank crushing two people in a car. Libyan President Muammar Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi has also imposed a news blackout on the country and banned journalists from entering.

Analysts have further suggested that the human cost of an Egyptian-style uprising in Libya could be far higher, given the military apparent enthusiasm for firing on its own population.

Bahrain’s military meanwhile shot and killed at least one demonstrator and wounded 50 more, during a funeral procession for four people killed in earlier unrest.

Rising tensions and ongoing demonstrations suggest that King Hamad bin Issa al-Khalifa’s gift of US$3000 on February 12 to every family in the poverty-stricken Gulf nation has failed to satisfy protesters.

The UK, which has previously supported regimes in Bahrain and Libya, announced it was withdrawing licenses authorising the sale on arms to both countries.

The UK’s Ministry of Defence has trained more than 100 Bahraini army officers in the past five years at its military college in Sandhurst, reports the UK’s Guardian newspaper, while the country is also a base for the US fifth fleet.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay has meanwhile condemned the shooting of protesters in Algeria, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Yemen, and described the entire region as “boiling with anger.”

“At the root of this anger is decades of neglect of people’s aspirations to realise not only civil and political rights, but also economic, social and cultural rights,” Navi said.


16 thoughts on “Libyan army guns down demonstrators, UK backs away from Bahrain”

  1. Colonel Gadaffi of Libya is a blood-thirsty brute. He is not a Muslim. He is not even a human being.

    Libya does not have the type of army that the Egyptians have, full of patriotism and noble ideals.

    Even Bahrain does not have the Egyptian type of army.

    Bahrain is also a divided country. A Sunni minority is ruling over a Shia majority by force.

    The army and police forces in Bahrain are foreign mercenaries of the Sunni sect. They are not even Bahraini people.

    Like Kuwait, Bahrain is "owned" by one particular family.

    Under Gayoom, even Maldives was a bit like Bahrain: one-family owned.

    Egypt is so big and so important that a successful revolution in Egypt will automatically spread to other Arab countries.

    Idiots like Gadaffi and the Ruler of Bahrain cannot stop it.

    Even USA cannot stop it.

    Arabs vs. Israel. That is also a problem of the future.

    A good solution to this particular problem will be an "Act of Union" between USA and Israel. Such a union exists even now. It only needs to be formally announced.

  2. cant call anyone a non-muslim coz you never know his heart, his actions, his powers over things...

    Before a revolution in Libya, the corrupted western system needs to be revolutionized and then countries like libya will have no one to support these acts of violence against its own citizen.

  3. Hey MN I want stories about Izzantheringe Barahanaa photos taken and some kids were arrested by Maldives dictatorial regime. Nothing different than Bahrain and Lybia. Here under age kids been arrested just because they are smarter than these crooks in the parliament with fat salaries. Now most of these crooks are entangled by their barahanaa photos about to be leaked on internet.

  4. fahmy's comments dosen't make sense. USA and Israel is the main culprits behind the strikes in these arab countries. With their puppet governments in these regions, they have imposed economic and social sanctions in these regions on their own people. What would be a good solution is for the Western Countries to stay away from the matters in the arab countries. As far as their so called- democratic diplomacy is concerned, it has failed in the region.

  5. Gaddafi has cunningly bought the west with oil deals. Even the Lockerbie bombings is now ignored. So far no western leader has called for Gaddafi's to step down in-spite the fact that Gadaffi is often portrayed as the enemy of the west.

    But they were all quick to call for Mubaarak's resignation. Surely OIL takes priority over the espoused principles of democracy and human rights..

    Autocrats are ok as long as oil keeps flowing to big oil companies..

  6. Yeah man.. kill all the Libyans..and you yourself alone stay as the leader of Libya.


  7. @Faude

    People are trying to get there rights inherently this is inevitable, no outside force should be needed the trigger has been pulled. As far as dictatorships goes arabs regions has been under dictatorship rule for for more than 2000 years some less. while the west has moved on to democracy long past. So in inherently the dictatorships clique, family or oligarchy would in react to maintain there rule what you say is bat S, incompetent?!!

  8. @Zeenat

    Yes Zeenat. I also think democracy is a God's idea and that we should thank him for letting us have it, unlike how he predestined these other unfortunate nations not to have it before a bloodbath.

    Thank god indeed!

  9. I agree with all of u guys but we r ignoring bahrain. hope bahraini people will get their rights soon and God will help them in overcomming the puppet regime.

  10. JJ Robinson, you are showing a lot of interest in publishing the middle east unrest news on MN. But why didn't you publish the most famous middle east news of this week, which wass United States vetoed a UN security council resolution that condemns Israeli settlements and UN labels them as 'illegal'. All the security council members including EU representetives in UN favour with the resolution. Only USA opposed to the resolution. The dream of Palestinians to have their future state has once again been shattered by the US support on Israel. Why ddin't you cover this news? Is it that because you and MN are one are all biased to one side of journalism?

  11. Yeah yeah...We know the spin on this. We heard it too, a few years back. It goes like this...

    "Whoever who raises voice against me is going to hell. If we want Islam to prevail in the middleeast, you must let me be the ruler. Allah has given me guidance on this."

  12. If there is GOD (not sure which GOD? Muslim God, Allah?) why the God let this happen and let so many innocent people die who pray for him every day?
    Will some other say those people deserved to die? because the God want them die?
    In fact GOD is reflection of human frailty & come through fear or ridiculous egotism.

  13. @Don't know why, excellent point, a moral protest against God, it is very just to do so, to reject God in the name of humanity, why would a supposedly Merciful God allow all this suffering, it is contradictory, to be called All Merciful, All Powerful (Arahman al Qudrah) and allow such pain,

    :yet on the other hand, there seems no ultimate hope for justice and no ultimate hope for a healthy life in a hereafter without beleif in some supernatural something, simply because it is not possible to achieve perfection here.

    Back to the original topic, I really liked this point: "At the root of this anger is decades of neglect of people’s aspirations to realise not only civil and political rights, but also economic, social and cultural rights,” Navi said.

  14. You are correct, to abandon humanity in the pursuit of power is to assign yourself to the animal kingdom by definition of what separates us humans from animals, a sense of a soul or right and wrong... The Colonel is an animal, as are all dictators


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