Protests continue in Yemen, Algeria and Morocco as strikes banned in Egypt

Pitched street battles continue in Yemen as riot police target protesters in Algeria and Morocco. Strikes are banned in Egypt.

The wave of protests across the Arab world continued yesterday as Bahraini security forces ceded control of the symbolic Pearl Square in Manama to demonstrators and another protester was killed in Yemen.

The protests were being watched anxiously by authoritarian rulers across the region. These included Saudi Arabia, which joined forces with China to water down a G22 resolution welcoming the democratic uprising that has ousted the rulers of Egypt and Tunisia and helped to inspire the current unrest.

Yemen An anti-government protester was killed and another seven injured in the capital, Sana'a, during pitched street battles with supporters of Ali Abdullah Saleh, the country's President for 32 years.

In an echo of claims made by politicians in Hosni Mubarak's regime midway through the protests that toppled him nine days ago, the Yemeni President – considered an ally in the US fight against al-Qa'ida – blamed a "foreign agenda" and "a conspiracy against Yemen". In fact, the protests appear to have stemmed more from anger over corruption, unemployment, and rock-bottom family incomes in the poorest country in the Arab world.

The protester was shot and taken to a hospital near Sana'a University where he died. Reuters said it was the first time the use of firearms by both sides had been reported.

In south Yemen, where the President has struggled to contain a secessionist movement, dozens of men in the town of Karish shouted slogans calling for the fall of the regime. They used their cars to try to block the main road between the city of Taiz, where many thousands of anti-government protesters have taken to the streets, and the southern port of Aden. In Aden, around 400 protesters staged a peaceful sit-in, brandishing banners proclaiming "No to oppression. No to corruption."

Algeria/Morocco Algerian riot police surrounded about 500 people trying to stage a march through the capital, Algiers. The crowd was herded into the courtyard of a residential block, where police surrounded protesters from both sides as well as hundreds of bystanders.

And in the Moroccan city of Tangier, riot police used truncheons to break up a protest in which a police station was attacked. Although the protest came on the eve of a nationwide call for demonstrations urging political reform, it appeared to stem from local anger over the high tariffs charged by foreign utilities.

Egypt Cairo's streets were back to normal yesterday after Friday's huge rally in Tahrir Square celebrating President Mubarak's going. A court ruling yesterday gave the banned Wasat Party, a breakaway from the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, full legal status

Meanwhile, one section of the leadership of Egypt's large Christian Coptic minority agreed to a request by the military to postpone its plans for a demonstration today calling for the repeal of article two of Egypt's constitution, which specifies Islam as the state religion. It to hold a conference on the issue instead.

One of the organisers, Coptic lawyer Naguib Copral, who was among a group calling on Copts not to join the 25 January anti-regime protests, said he was worried by calls by religious leaders and the Muslim Brotherhood for the article to stay, and by the appointment of a moderate Islamist, Tarek El-Bishry, to head the commission considering amendments to the constitution.

But another prominent Copt, Professor Mona Makram-Ebeid, who took part in the pro-democracy protest and is one of the trustees of its organisers' revolutionary council, said yesterday this was "the wrong time" to raise the issue. She said "the demand of the people is for an entirely new constitution"; if this proclaimed Egypt as a "secular, democratic, pluralist" state, she said, the article need not be an issue.

While the army has now issued its sternest warning yet to workers across the country to halt a wave of strikes, three ministers have been arrested on corruption charges, including Habib El Adly, the former minister of the interior widely blamed for the brutal attacks on pro-democracy demonstrators three weeks ago.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Plumber

£22000 - £25900 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Company is expanding and th...

Recruitment Genius: Corporate Account Manager

£27000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Corporate Account Manager is ...

Recruitment Genius: Chef de Partie

£7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This award winning conference venues provider...

Recruitment Genius: Admin Assistant

£12000 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An expanding Insurance Brokerag...

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders