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hubag bohol

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Reuters | Mar 30, 2011, 07.11am IST


DAMASCUS: Syrian president Bashar al-Assad accepted his government's resignation on Tuesday after nearly two weeks of pro-democracy unrest that has posed the gravest challenge to his 11-year rule.

But the move was unlikely to satisfy protester demands since the cabinet has little authority in Syria, where power is concentrated in the hands of Assad, his family and the security apparatus. Tens of thousands of Syrians held pro-government rallies on Tuesday, awaiting a speech in which Assad was expected to announce a decision on lifting emergency laws that have served to crush dissent for almost 50 years.

That is a key demand of anti-government demonstrations in which more than 60 people have been killed. "President Assad accepts the government's resignation," the state news agency SANA said, adding that Naji al-Otari, the prime minister since 2003, would remain caretaker until a new government was formed.


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hubag bohol

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Re: Not enough? Syria government quits, but may not satisfy protesters
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2011, 11:37:24 AM »
Another autocrat that needs to go...


hubag bohol

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Re: Not enough? Syria government quits, but may not satisfy protesters
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2011, 09:39:00 AM »
BY ZEINA KARAM - ASSOCIATED PRESS Mar 30, 2011


DAMASCUS, Syria -- Facing an extraordinary wave of popular dissent, Syrian President Bashar Assad fired his cabinet Tuesday and promised to end widely despised emergency laws -- concessions unlikely to appease protesters demanding sweeping reforms in one of the most hard-line nations in the Middle East.

The protest movement began after security forces arrested several teens who scrawled anti-government graffiti on a wall in the impoverished city of Daraa in the south.

The protests spread to other provinces and the government launched a swift crackdown, killing more than 60 people since March 18, according to Human Rights Watch. However, the violence has eased in the last few days, and some predicted the demonstrations might die out quickly if the president's promises appear genuine.

"People are tired from all this pressure and violence and I think if (Assad) shows he's taken the people's demands seriously, they might stop," said a protester in Daraa who gave only his first name, Ibrahim, for fear of reprisals by security forces. "We're all waiting for his speech."

Still, tensions remained high in Daraa, where several hundred people staged a sit-in Tuesday, and in the Mediterranean port of Latakia, which has a potentially volatile mix of different religious groups.

Earlier Tuesday, the Syrian government mobilized hundreds of thousands of supporters who poured into the streets of Damascus and across many parts of the country as the regime tried to show it has mass support.

Meanwhile, Yemen's President Ali Abdullah Saleh blamed "hired agents" for starting an insurgency in his country, a day after a deadly explosion at a weapons factory in the south.

At least 100 people were killed in Monday's blast.


http://www.freep.com/




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