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Protests, Protests, Protests

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#1 BansheeOne


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Posted 26 October 2019 - 0255 AM

Since the Catalonia thread is still unavailable and there is currently various significant unrest in different parts of the world, I thought I'd start a companion topic to the elections thread to watch civil disturbances which may or may not warrant its own. At least noone will misread the title as "erections" this time. :D

Catalan separatist protests to continue as elections loom
October 26, 2019 Yashu Kalera
Pro-Catalan independence activists will again take to the streets of the regional capital of Barcelona today.
Unrest was reignited last week by the Spanish Supreme Courts decision to sentence nine Catalan independence leaders to between nine and thirteen years in prison on sedition charges. Over the past five days, clashes between police and protesters have intensified, leaving some 170 injured.
General elections in Spain are due on November 10, and politicians are likely to stoke regional divisions to rally support for their respective parties. Indeed, left-wing parties like the ERC-Sobirenistes have encouraged protests for independence in the Catalonia, Valencia and Balearics regions.
Meanwhile, right-wing parties are promoting a united Spain. Vox, a controversial far-right party that first entered Spains parliament in April, will today hold a rally in Madrid to celebrate constitutional order and national coexistence. Such regionalism could serve to roil protesters, but remains unlikely to significantly alter electoral outcomes.
Catalonia accounts for 19% of Spanish GDP and its capital is a major tourist destination. However, the Spanish government is unlikely to concede to any demands for Catalan independence. Without concessions, it is possible that social unrest will morph into sporadic violent clashes between the police and protesters in the coming weeks.


October 25, 2019 / 6:47 PM / Updated 6 hours ago

One million Chileans march in Santiago, city grinds to halt

Dave Sherwood, Natalia A. Ramos Miranda
SANTIAGO (Reuters) - As many as a million Chileans protested peacefully late into the evening on Friday in the capital Santiago in the biggest rallies yet since violence broke out a week ago over entrenched inequality in the South American nation.

Protesters waving national flags, dancing, banging pots with wooden spoons and bearing placards urging political and social change streamed through the streets, walking for miles (km) from around Santiago to converge on Plaza Italia.Traffic already hobbled by truck and taxi drivers protesting road tolls ground to a standstill in Santiago as crowds shut down major avenues and public transport closed early ahead of marches that built throughout the afternoon.
By mid-evening, most had made their way home in the dark ahead of an 11 p.m. military curfew.
Santiago Governor Karla Rubilar said a million people marched in the capital - more than five percent of the countrys population. Protesters elsewhere took to the streets in every major Chilean city.
Today is a historic day, Rubilar wrote on Twitter. The Metropolitan Region is host to a peaceful march of almost one million people who represent a dream for a new Chile.
Some local commentators estimated the Santiago rally well over the million mark, describing it as the largest single march since the dying years of the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet.
Chiles unrest is the latest in a flare-up of protests in South America and around the world - from Beirut to Barcelona - each with local triggers but also sharing underlying anger at social disparities and ruling elites.
Protests in Chile that started over a hike in public transport fares last Friday boiled into riots, arson and looting that have killed at least 17 people, injured hundreds, resulted in more than 7,000 arrests and caused more than $1.4 billion of losses to Chilean businesses.
Chiles military has taken over security in Santiago, a city of 6 million people now under a state of emergency with night-time curfews as 20,000 soldiers patrol the streets.


Bolivia election: Protests as Evo Morales officially declared winner

25 October 2019

Bolivian President Evo Morales has been declared the winner of Sunday's election, despite disputed results that have sparked riots and claims of fraud.
Officials said Mr Morales had won 47.1% of the vote and beaten his closest rival by more than 10 percentage points, thereby avoiding a run-off.
Claims of vote-rigging were made after the count was interrupted for 24 hours.
Second-placed candidate Carlos Mesa has called for a second-round vote as have the US, Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.
But Mr Morales, Bolivia's first indigenous president and already Latin America's longest-serving leader, is now set to govern the country until 2025.
Police fired tear gas at crowds who protested by the thousands in the capital, La Paz. Clashes also broke out in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, the country's largest city and an opposition stronghold.
Many Bolivians say they no longer have confidence in the electoral authorities, and more protests are expected on Friday.
What does the result say?
According to the electoral tribunal, which said 99.9% of ballots had been counted, Mr Mesa has won 36.51% of the vote. This gives Mr Morales a winning margin of more than 10 percentage points, meaning that a second round of voting is not required under the election law.
The remaining 0.01% of votes were voided in the region of Beni, with new voting there scheduled for November. These votes would not be enough to change the outcome of the election, a spokeswoman for the electoral tribunal said.


'All of them': Lebanon protesters dig in after Nasrallah's speech
Protesters say their demands are 'clear' as Hezbollah leader warns a government resignation would create power vacuum.

by Mersiha Gadzo
11 hours ago
Beirut, Lebanon - Demonstrators in the Lebanese capital say their demands are "clear" and they will keep protesting until the government falls, disregarding a speech by Hezbollah's leader who warned that the protest movement risked pushing Lebanon into "chaos" and "God forbid" civil war.

In a televised address on Friday, Hassan Nasrallah said a government resignation would create a power vacuum which could lead the country into civil unrest "similar to what's happening in the region".
"Under the current monetary and economic situation and the fragile political climate and all the targeting that is happening internationally and regionally, void will lead to chaos, void will lead to destruction," Nasrallah warned, conjuring fears of Lebanon's 15-year civil war that came to an end in 1990.

"We do not accept the fall of the presidency nor do we accept the government's resignation and we do not accept, amid these conditions, holding early parliamentary elections."
For nine days, Lebanese from across the country's sectarian and political divides have been taking to the streets and blocking major roads to call for the resignation of the country's sectarian power-sharing government. Angry at official corruption, a stagnant economy and poor services, they demand an overhaul of Lebanon's political system and an end to austerity measures.
In a bid to appease the protesters, Prime Minister Saad Hariri on Monday unveiled a series of economic reforms, including no new taxes for the 2020 budget, a 50 percent reduction in the salaries of current and former politicians, the abolition of obsolete state institutions and the drafting of a law that seeks to restore public funds.
The leaderless protesters, however, rejected the announcement as insufficient and continued pouring onto the streets of the capital, Beirut, and elsewhere.
In his speech, Nasrallah hailed the reforms package, which he called "unprecedented", and reassured the protesters that they will be implemented.

He also repeated President Michel Aoun's call on Thursday for a dialogue and welcomed representatives of the movement to deliver a "clear set of demands".
'Everyone means everyone'
At Martyrs' Square in Beirut, where various civil society groups have set up tents, protesters found Nasrallah's speech to be irrelevant to their goal - much like Aoun's televised statement the previous day.
"We tell him - everyone means everyone," a Lebanese woman told Al Jazeera, preferring to stay anonymous.
"It's very clear - the cabinet must resign and then everything will fit into what is constitutional and everything will be OK."
The "All of them means all of them" chant has been a popular slogan since the protests began on October 17, with demonstrators insisting no politician should be exempted from resignation.
Hezbollah, seen as the strongest military and political force in the country, is part of the government that came to power last year after months of negotiations. The movement is aligned with Iran and does not accept any move that could change the status quo.
During his speech, Nasrallah also argued that while the mass protests had started off as a spontaneous movement, they had recently been hijacked.
"Lebanon has entered a stage of regional political targeting, and it is no longer just a popular movement," he said.


Edited by BansheeOne, 26 October 2019 - 1459 PM.

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#2 JasonJ



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Posted 26 October 2019 - 0739 AM

The delay in ratification of the CPTPP in Chile seemed to have reflected a fairly deep divide in the country, a divide now coming out.
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#3 Ivanhoe


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Posted 26 October 2019 - 0953 AM

The Chilean thing surprises me, but then again their political body is in a season of change. Land reform issue always simmering there, it seems.

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#4 BansheeOne


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Posted 28 October 2019 - 0455 AM

No protest without counter-protest.


October 27, 2019 / 4:36 PM / Updated 18 hours ago
Catalonia divided: Barcelona hosts unionist rally a day after separatist march


BARCELONA (Reuters) - Huge crowds of Catalans supporting continued union with Spain marched through Barcelona on Sunday, a day after the city hosted two pro-independence protests - highlighting deep political faultlines within the region.


Police said Sunday’s peaceful rally drew 80,000 while organizers Societat Civil Catalana, a pro-unity umbrella group, put the turnout at 400,000.


“Unlike the separatists, we neither want nor need frontiers, or walls,” its leader Fernando Sanchez Costa said. Pro-independence regional government head Quim Torra should step down “if he can’t govern for all Catalans”, local newspaper La Vanguardia quoted Sanchez Costa as saying.


Some 350,000 had attended a separatist march on Saturday organized by civil rights groups, police said, hours before a second, smaller, pro-independence demonstration outside Spanish police headquarters turned violent.


Independence is highly divisive in Catalonia, with a poll in July showing 44% backing secession and 48.3% against it.


All Spain’s main political parties have rejected any moves towards Catalan independence, with only left-wing Podemos accepting the possibility of a second referendum, following one that was held in autumn 2017 despite being declared illegal.


Nine Catalan politicians and activists were this month sentenced to long prison terms over their roles in that failed independence bid.



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#5 JasonJ



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Posted 28 October 2019 - 0903 AM

Very deadly protests in Iraq this month.

BAGHDAD (AP) — The Latest on anti-government protests in Iraq (all times local):

3 p.m.

Iraqi officials say two protesters have been killed and at least 105 have been wounded in clashes with security forces in central Baghdad's Tahrir Square.

At least 72 protesters have been killed since nationwide anti-government protests resumed on Friday, after an earlier wave of demonstrations this month saw 149 killed. The protesters are demanding the resignation of the government, which they blame for corruption, economic stagnation and poor services.

Iraqi security and medical officials confirmed the latest casualties on Monday, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief reporters.

— Qassim Abdul-Zahra in Baghdad


2 p.m.

Thousands of students have joined Iraq's anti-government protests, defying a government order and tear gas from security forces.

The students skipped classes at several universities and secondary schools in Baghdad and across the Shiite south on Monday to take part in the protests. The demonstrations are fueled by anger at corruption, economic stagnation and poor public services.

In Baghdad's Tahrir Square, the epicenter of the protests, demonstrators chanted: "It's a student revolution, no to the government, no to parties!"

Security forces have fired tear gas and stun grenades to keep protesters from crossing a main bridge leading to the Green Zone, home to government offices and embassies.

At least 219 people have been killed in clashes with security forces since the protests began earlier this month.

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#6 BansheeOne


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Posted 30 October 2019 - 1053 AM

October 30, 2019 / 3:30 PM / Updated 38 minutes ago

Chile says it can't host trade and climate summits after protests


SANTIAGO (Reuters) - Chile has withdrawn as host of the APEC trade summit in November and the COP25 climate summit in December after several weeks of violent unrest, President Sebastian Pinera announced on Wednesday.


The APEC summit was scheduled to bring together 20 world leaders, including U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, over Nov. 16-17. The COP25 program was due to run between Dec. 2 and Dec. 13.


“This has been a very difficult decision, a decision that causes us a lot of pain, because we fully understand the importance of APEC and COP-25 for Chile and for the world,” Pinera said in a brief statement from La Moneda palace in Santiago.


Riots, arson and protests over inequality this month have left at least 18 dead, 7,000 arrested and Chilean businesses hit with losses of around $1.4 billion. The capital city’s metro public transport suffered nearly $400 million in damages.






Lebanese protesters celebrate Hariri resignation, but want more


Demonstrators hail prime minister's departure but promise to stay in the streets until all their demands are met.


by Timour Azhari


9 hours ago


Beirut, Lebanon - Cries of celebration went up across Lebanon on Tuesday as protesters demanding the fall of the government celebrated Prime Minister Saad Hariri's resignation - though most said this was merely an initial victory in a long-term battle.


"It's a good first step but we're still going to stay in the streets," Pierre Mouzannar, a 21-year old filmmaker told Al Jazeera in central Beirut. "Hariri is part of the problem but he's not all of the problem … I don't think anyone thinks we're done."


For many demonstrators in the capital, the news of Hariri's resignation was an important boost in their nearly two-week protest movement following a day of street brawls instigated by supporters of Hezbollah and the Amal Movement party.


Hundreds of men, most wearing black, beat protesters and destroyed protest encampments in central Beirut before Hariri's televised address, eventually retreating after security forces fired tear gas and rubber bullets.


"Hariri isn't the one who's sending his people to beat us up and destroy what we have. Those people are still in Parliament and we need to finish what we've started there," Mouzannar said, sitting next to a tent being reconstructed by protesters.




 'Get rid of them all'


For thirteen days, Lebanese from across the country's sectarian and political divides have been pouring onto the streets and blocking major roads to call for the resignation of the government and for the ruling elite to be held accountable for decades of corruption.


For a broad swath of the protesters, a main demand has been the formation of a government of independent experts to guide the country through a worsening economic and financial crisis and secure basic services such as electricity and water.


"We don't want any part of the ruling class to be part of this government. The most important thing is to get rid of them all, and form a new electoral law that abolishes sectarianism and has Lebanon as one district," Rafeef, a 21-year old law student, said. Lebanon's current electoral law has the country gerrymandered into 15 districts, with seats allocated by sect.


But the formation of such a government may prove challenging.


Sami Nader, the director of the Levant Institute for Strategic Affairs, said a cabinet of independent experts was a "rosy idea."


He said the most likely outcome would be the formation of a government "ala Libanainse, which means you put some independent figures in order to satisfy the street, but the old modus operandi will remain".


"At least Hariri opened the door for a possible solution, because we were in total deadlock and … behaving as if nothing happened and doing business as usual was not a solution."


Now, the biggest issue is how Lebanon - one of the world's most highly indebted nations, with public debt at more than 150 percent of GDP - can avoid financial collapse, he said.


Lebanon's Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh on Monday said the country needed a solution to the crisis within days to avoid a financial collapse.


"The only real way forward for Lebanon is to appoint a government that can move on from the disruption of this revolution and restore the confidence with the people and the international community," Nader said.





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#7 BansheeOne


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Posted 03 November 2019 - 0450 AM

Algeria protest: Thousands flood capital to demand 'new revolution'

1 November 2019

Tens of thousands of demonstrators have converged on the streets of Algiers as Algeria marked the 65th anniversary of its war of independence from France.


Protesters are demanding a "new revolution" and oppose the government's proposed election next month.


Demonstrations in the capital on Friday were some of the largest since protests began in February.


Long-serving President Abdelaziz Bouteflika resigned in April after weeks of street protests.


But his departure was not enough for the predominantly young protesters who have taken to the streets for 37 consecutive Fridays.


They are calling for sweeping government reforms, accusing leaders of widespread corruption and state repression.


Protesters do not want an election next month - they argue it would not be transparent or fair under the current political system.



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#8 JasonJ



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Posted 03 November 2019 - 0621 AM


Algeria protest: Thousands flood capital to demand 'new revolution'

1 November 2019

Tens of thousands of demonstrators have converged on the streets of Algiers as Algeria marked the 65th anniversary of its war of independence from France.







First time hearing about it even though its been going on since February. Some more on it.


Edited by JasonJ, 03 November 2019 - 2004 PM.

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#9 BansheeOne


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Posted 09 November 2019 - 1405 PM

Deepstaters, deepstaters everywhere.


Date 09.11.2019


Bolivia: Morales warns of coup d'etat over police mutiny


Bolivia's president has hit out at police units in four regions for rebelling against the government amid mass protests. Evo Morales will struggle to get through his fourth term without the support of security forces.


Bolivian President Evo Morales on Friday warned the country that violent groups had launched a "coup d'etat" after a police mutiny was reported in several regions.


"Sisters and brothers, our democracy is at risk due to the coup d'etat that violent groups have launched to undermine the constitutional order," he wrote on Twitter late on Friday.


The president's remarks followed local media reports that police units in at least four regions had decided to rebel against the government.


Police join protests


In some cases, groups of officers joined the anti-government protests that have rocked the country since Morales won a strong but disputed victory in the October 20 elections.


Bolivian television broadcast footage of police shaking hands with demonstrators in the city of La Paz — a stark contrast to the previous three nights, when the two sides clashed.


Units in the southeastern city of Sucre and the opposition stronghold of Santa Cruz said they were also joining a rebellion launched by police officers in the central city of Cochabamba.


The police mutiny is the first sign that security forces are withdrawing support for Morales, who is South America's longest-running president, having taken office in 2006.


After an emergency Cabinet meeting, the country's defense minister said the government had, for now, ruled out a military operation against the rebellious police teams.


Election irregularities rejected


Earlier on Friday, the country's electoral tribunal (TSE) rejected claims that vote count irregularities had been discovered in the poll, while protesters continued their demands for a new election.


The TSE referred critics to a report by the company Ethical Hacking, which had checked the electronic vote and did not find any "alteration of the data."


But the company’s head, Alvaro Andrade, said his firm did find "vulnerabilities" in the vote count, local media reported.


Carlos Mesa, who lost to Morales in the election, has denounced the vote as fraudulent, insisting the results had been manipulated during a 24-hour period when the electoral count was suspended.


The United States, Colombia, Brazil and Argentina have also called for a second-round runoff between Morales and Mesa.


Bolivia has been consumed by weeks of protests and rioting by opposition groups and supporters of Morales ever since. Three people have been killed and more than 300 injured.



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#10 RETAC21


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Posted 09 November 2019 - 1504 PM



Algeria protest: Thousands flood capital to demand 'new revolution'

1 November 2019

Tens of thousands of demonstrators have converged on the streets of Algiers as Algeria marked the 65th anniversary of its war of independence from France.







First time hearing about it even though its been going on since February. Some more on it.




The protestors have been at pains to be peaceful despite provocations, so they don't make good copy in the news. They do this in order to be branded as islamist terrorists, which in Algeria means green light to do whatever the regimes wants.

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#11 BansheeOne


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Posted 16 November 2019 - 0411 AM

Date 16.11.2019

Author Ian Willoughby (Prague)


Spirit of dissent lives as Czechs mark Velvet Revolution with protest


In November 1989 Czechs took to the streets to demand an end to four decades of Communist rule. Today some in the Czech Republic are protesting again. Though times have changed, their motivation is similar.


Czechoslovakia's Velvet Revolution was ignited on November 17, 1989 when riot police brutally attacked students who had veered off the route of an authorized march and headed for downtown Prague. The unprecedented violence — and false rumors that a student had been killed — immediately sparked a response. An opposition grouping, Civic Forum, was established and university students went on strike.


Vit Pohanka, then a final-year student at Palacky University in the city of Olomouc, was elected to a hurriedly formed committee to coordinate a protest occupation at his faculty.




Then-student leader Pohanka describes what became known as the Velvet Revolution as the most exciting time of his life. "I was 23 years old and everything was possible," he says. "For us, it was something very euphoric."


Return to the streets


That euphoria has long since cooled.


Czechs are again taking to the streets in large numbers, this time not to protest one-party rule but out of a sense that politicians with roots in the pre-1989 system are once again on top.


"We are still dealing with the legacy of communist leadership," says student Benjamin Roll, deputy head of the civic group Million Moments for Democracy.


Roll is in part referring to the current Czech prime minister, one-time Communist Andrej Babis, who Million Moments for Democracy formed specifically to oppose.


Babis — who owns a number of major Czech media outlets — is listed as an agent of the totalitarian-era secret police in files held in Slovakia and has faced corruption allegations relating to Agrofert, the conglomerate that made him one of the country's richest people. His ANO party heads a minority government that needs the support of the present-day Communist Party to remain in power.


"Andrej Babis is in major conflict of interest and holds too much power in his hands," says Roll. "We are demanding the resignation of Babis and the minister of justice, Marie Benesova." Benesova was appointed by the prime minister days after police recommended he face trial for alleged abuse of EU subsidies, though that case has since been shelved.


Spirit of the revolution


In June Million Moments for Democracy drew over a quarter of a million people to a demonstration— the country's most attended since 1989 — against Babis at Letna Plain, an open area near Prague Castle that had also drawn the largest gatherings of the Velvet Revolution.


Roll, who is 24 and planning to become a Protestant pastor, says some of those who attend his group's rallies are inspired by the spirit of the Velvet Revolution.


"The situation around Babis and Zeman is making lots of people remember what they fought for in 1989," he says.


Czech President Milos Zeman is seen as a close ally of Babis's and pursues warmer ties with Russia and China.




Benjamin Roll says the date of the group's latest actions is not coincidental.


"We want people to remember the Velvet Revolution," Roll says. "We are not doing another revolution or something — we are actually trying to protect what was accomplished in 1989."




Meanwhile, Bolivians protest that Morales was ousted by protests. Or by a coup, as the fashionable pan-American narrative goes these days.


Date 16.11.2019


Bolivia: Five killed in pro-Morales protests


The police and military used live fire against supporters of former President Evo Morales. The violence deepens unrest and poses a heightened challenge to the interim government.


Five supporters of former Bolivian President Evo Morales were killed in clashes between protesters and security forces in central Bolivia on Friday.


The violence, which also left at least 75 injured, escalates unrest facing a four-day-old interim government whose opponents accuse it of carrying out a foreign-backed, right-wing coup to topple the country's first indigenous leader.


Thousands of mostly indigenous protesters had gathered peacefully in Sacaba, but clashes broke out when they attempted to cross a military checkpoint near the city of Cochabamba, the country's fourth-largest city.


Witnesses reported the police and military fired live ammunition at protesters, who had earlier been shot at with tear gas.


Morales, who resigned on Sunday and fled to Mexico after coming under pressure from opposition protesters and the military following a disputed October 20 election, wrote on Twitter that the interim government was massacring people and represented a "true dictatorship."


The Inter-American Commission for Human Rights condemned what it called a disproportionate use by security forces of live fire and tear gas against protesters.


The interim government didn't immediately comment on the deaths but said around 100 people had been arrested. 


Angry supporters of Morales have staged their own protests since his ouster against the interim government.


Interim President Jeanine Anez, the vice president of the senate who took over on Tuesday after a spate of resignations, said Friday that Morales could return to Bolivia but would face justice over allegations of electoral fraud and corruption. 


However, she has said Morales cannot be a candidate in new elections.


Morales claims he is still president because Congress did not officially accept his resignation.


The Constitutional Court has backed Anez's claim that she didn't need to be confirmed by Congress, a body controlled by Morales' Movement Toward Socialism party.






And Chile may get a new constitution.


Chile protests: Government bows to demands for referendum

15 November 2019

Chile has announced it will hold a referendum on the country's constitution following weeks of anti-government protests.


Protesters are demanding social reforms and a change to the constitution which dates back to the pre-democracy era of the military leader, Augusto Pinochet.


The vote will take place in April.


At least 20 people have died and about 1,000 have been injured in protests that started over a hike in subway fares.


The "Agreement for Peace and a New Constitution" was signed at midnight following long negotiations.


The referendum will ask voters if they want the constitution to be replaced.


It will also ask voters who think it should be replaced to choose between three different bodies to draw up a new constitution. The options are a body of fully elected representatives, political appointees or an equal mix of both.


The current constitution does not currently establish the state's responsibility to provide healthcare and education, which are two demands from the protesters.





Edited by BansheeOne, 16 November 2019 - 0418 AM.

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#12 BansheeOne


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Posted 17 November 2019 - 0559 AM

What to do in case of gas price hikes? Set fire to gas warehouses in protest, of course.


Iran petrol price hike: Protesters warned that security forces may intervene

8 hours ago

Iran's Interior Minister has warned security officials will step up action against protesters taking to the streets over a new petrol policy.


Protests have erupted across Iran after the government unexpectedly announced it was rationing petrol and increasing its price.


At least one person has been killed and others injured in the violence.


Officials say the changes, which have seen prices rise by at least 50%, will free up money to help the poor.


Iran is already suffering economically due to stiff sanctions imposed by the US after Washington decided to pull out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.


Protests erupted hours after the new policies were announced on Friday - with fresh demonstrations on Saturday in some cities.


There are also reports that access to the internet may have been restricted, Reuters reported citing a web monitoring group.


Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani-Fazli, speaking during an interview with state television on Saturday, warned that law enforcement and security officials will have "no choice" but to step in and restore calm if "illegal" actions continue.


Mr Rahmani-Fazli criticised a "limited number" of people whom he accused of abusing the public mood to create "intimidation and terror".


What is the latest with protests?

At least one person was killed during protests in the central city of Sirjan on Friday, officials confirmed.


State news agency Irna said there were clashes with police when protesters attacked a fuel storage warehouse on Friday and tried to set fire to it.


Fresh protests were held Saturday in the cities of Doroud, Garmsar, Gorgan, Ilam, Karaj, Khoramabad, Mehdishahr, Qazvin, Qom, Sanandaj, Shahroud and Shiraz, Irna reported.


Footage posted on social media suggest other people may have been killed on Saturday.


The semi-official Isna news agency reported that security officials have threatened to legally pursue social media users who were sharing footage online.


A statement, accredited to the Security Emergency Centre (SEC) of Iran's Interior Ministry, accused some users "rumour-mongering" and "spreading lies" about the protests.


The report also claimed that footage was being recycled from incidents in previous years to undermine public confidence and disrupt national security.


On both days there were reports of angry motorists blocking some roads by turning off car engines or abandoning vehicles in traffic.


Videos posted online purportedly showed motorists in the capital, Tehran, stopping traffic on the Imam Ali Highway and chanting for the police to support them.


Another clip shows what appeared to be a roadblock across the Tehran-Karaj motorway, hit by the season's first heavy snowfall. Other videos spreading online show clashes between security forces and protesters, and banks burning in several cities.


Some pictures appeared to show police stations aflame in the southern city of Shiraz.


Speaking on Iranian state TV, Prosecutor General Mohammad Jafar Montazeri blamed a "few disruptors" for the protests. He urged people to distance themselves from those who - in his words - want to show their opposition to the Islamic system.


He also accused the protesters of having "roots outside the country".






And since the Yellow Vest thread also seems currently unavailable:


Date 16.11.2019


France: Tear gas fired as yellow vests attempt comeback


Clashes broke out between protesters and police on the streets of Paris as demonstrators marked the one-year anniversary of France's yellow vest movement. Tear gas canisters were deployed and scores of arrests made.


Police arrested two dozen people in the French capital on Saturday morning as demonstrators commemorated the one-year anniversary of the yellow vest protests against the government of President Emmanuel Macron.


In northwest Paris, police dislodged demonstrators trying to block the bypass around the city and fired tear gas to push back protesters who were preparing to march across town towards the Gare d'Austerlitz in the south.


Police said they had carried out more than 1,000 checks and arrested 24 people by 10:50 a.m. local time (0950 UTC). 


Several metro stations in the city were closed on Saturday.


Protest is 'happy birthday' to Yellow Vest movement


Demonstrators mostly gathered in the southern and northwestern areas of the capital city. "We're here even if Macron doesn't like it" chanted protesters, while others sang "happy birthday" to mark the anniversary of the yellow vest protests.


Police attempted to call off a protest that had been arranged for Saturday evening as violence had erupted at the arranged place earlier in the day.




The yellow vest movement, named for the breakdown vests found in French automobiles which the demonstrators wore, began in November 2018 in opposition to a fuel tax, with many protests involving blocking roads and highways.


The demonstrations, which occasionally turned violent, evolved into an anti-government uprising against Macron and his policies seen as favoring the rich. At its peak, the protest drew up to 300,000 people around the country.


The movement has since lost steam, going from tens of thousands of demonstrators to a few thousand. However, the leaders of the protest called on supporters to re-mobilize on Saturday to celebrate the movement's first anniversary.



Edited by BansheeOne, 17 November 2019 - 0616 AM.

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#13 BansheeOne


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Posted 20 November 2019 - 0838 AM

Iran protests leave 'over 100 dead,' Amnesty says

20 hours ago

Human rights watchdog Amnesty International said Iranian security forces have killed at least 106 protesters during ongoing unrest over a fuel price hike. But the real death toll could be much higher.

At least 106 people have been killed across Iran since widespread protests erupted five days ago, Amnesty International said Tuesday.

"The organization believes that the real death toll may be much higher, with some reports suggesting as many as 200 have been killed," Amnesty said in a statement.

Citing "credible reports," Amnesty said people had been killed in 21 cities in "a harrowing pattern of unlawful killings by Iranian security forces."

Assessing the death toll from the security forces' crackdown has been made difficult given reporting restrictions and authorities shutting down of the internet.

The harsh tactics used against protesters include live fire, snipers firing into crowds from rooftops and, in one case, a helicopter, Amnesty said.

Iran's government has not provided an official figure of the death toll and local media has reported only a handful of deaths. At least 1,000 people have reportedly been arrested and the Kayhan newspaper, which is close to hardliners, suggested Tuesday that some protest leaders could be executed.



Bolivia crisis: Death toll rises as security forces overwhelm protesters near La Paz

By Gremaud Angee and Joshua Berlinger, CNN

Updated 3:49 AM EST, Wed November 20, 2019

(CNN) - Three people were killed Tuesday when Bolivian security services attempted to clear a path for gas tanks to leave the Senkata gas plant near La Paz.

Their deaths take the number of people killed in political unrest to 23 since the October 20 president election, according to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.


The Bolivian Ombudsman's office said the three protesters were killed Tuesday as Bolivian Armed Forces and police worked to "enable the exit of gasoline tanks" from the Senkata plant.

The military released a statement saying it was attempting to preserve a "strategic essential public service," and had exhausted options of dialogue. Bolivian Defense Minister Luis Lopez said at a news conference he regretted the event but maintained that "not a single projectile was from the army."

International monitors have warned about potential human rights abuses and called on Bolivia's government and opposition to resolve the political crisis peacefully.

Morales said in an interview with CNN Friday he was willing to return to Bolivia and not run in the next election for the sake of peace and stability if his resignation is accepted.

Interim President Jeanine Anez blamed Morales for the uptick in violence.

"I am astonished by the shape of violence Evo Morales has generated within the country by simply holding on to power," she told CNN Friday.

Human Rights Watch accused the Anez government of giving the military sweeping powers that "appear to prioritize brutally cracking down on opponents and critics and give the armed forces a blank check to commit abuses instead of working to restore the rule of law in the country."

"The priority should be to ensure that the fundamental rights of Bolivians, including to peaceful protest and other peaceful assembly, are upheld," José Miguel Vivanco, Americas director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement.



Edited by BansheeOne, 20 November 2019 - 0840 AM.

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#14 BansheeOne


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Posted 23 November 2019 - 0444 AM

Date 23.11.2019

Colombian president Ivan Duque orders curfew in Bogota amid protests

As massive anti-government protests continue in Colombia, the president has called for a "national conversation" while shutting down the capital city overnight. Multiple deaths and injuries have been reported.
Colombia's president, Ivan Duque, ordered a curfew in the nation's capital Friday night as unrest continues following a massive march Thursday that brought an estimated 250,000 people into the streets.
The protests in Bogota are centered on discontent with Duque's conservative government a key ally of the United States, rumors of economic reforms, and what protesters say is a lack of government action to stop corruption and the murder of human rights activists.
In a televised speech Friday evening, Duque said he would "launch a national conversation" to "strengthen the current social policy agenda" and "close social gaps."
Duque said the dialogue will include all social sectors and take place in cities around the country starting next week. The president also ordered the "deployment of joint patrols of police and army in the most critical places."
Venting their anger have been trade unionists, students, opposition parties and indigenous organizations.
Escalating violence 
While the protests on Thursday started out peaceful, they ended with scattered clashes between protesters and police. On Friday, protesters clashed with police in several parts of the city.
In the southwestern province of Cauca, at least three police officers were killed and five injured in a bomb blast outside a police station in the town of Santander de Quilichaom, authorities said.
Bogata Mayor Enrique Penalosa had earlier announced a curfew for three neighborhoods, but extended the measure later Friday evening to the entire city of 7 million on request of the president.
There were reports Friday night of hundreds of people defying the curfew to protest outside the home of President Duque in Bogata.

Protesters dispersed peacefully about one hour after the start of the 9:00 p.m. [local time] curfew, according to news agency AFP.
Defense Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo said that, as of Friday morning, 98 people had been detained and 151 police and military officers had been injured, along with 122 civilians with minor injuries and tear gas inhalation.


November 22, 2019 / 5:50 PM / Updated 16 hours ago

Iran's Revolutionary Guards arrest about 100 protest leaders: Iranian judiciary

GENEVA (Reuters) - Irans Revolutionary Guards have arrested about 100 leaders of protests that erupted last week over gasoline price rises, Gholamhossein Esmaili, spokesman for Irans judiciary, said on Friday according to the official IRNA news agency.
Approximately 100 leaders, heads and main figures of the recent unrest were identified and arrested in various parts of the country by the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, Esmaili said.
Iranian authorities have said about 1,000 demonstrators have been arrested.
Anyone who created insecurity or damaged public property will face severe punishment, the head the judiciary, Ebrahimi Raisi, said on Friday, according to Mizan, the news site of the judiciary.
A large number of people arrested who had taken part in the protests but did not take part in causing damage or setting fires have been released, judiciary spokesman Esmaili said, according to Mizan.
The Guards said calm had returned across Iran on Thursday, state TV reported. Amnesty International said more than 100 demonstrators had been killed by the security forces, a figure rejected as speculative by the government.


Edited by BansheeOne, 28 November 2019 - 0614 AM.

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#15 Tim the Tank Nut

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Posted 23 November 2019 - 0910 AM

it is interesting to see the resurgence of protests against totalitarian regimes.  With all the technology at the governments' disposal people are still willing to take the risk.

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#16 Ivanhoe


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Posted 23 November 2019 - 1052 AM

When oppression becomes generational, perhaps societies reach a point where the 2nd or 3rd generation accepts that oppression is permanent and not just going to go away on its own.

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#17 BansheeOne


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Posted 24 November 2019 - 0713 AM

This is the republic, not the state.


November 22, 2019 / 3:33 PM / 2 days ago


Georgia activists try to padlock state buildings as protest spreads 


TBILISI (Reuters) - Opposition activists in Georgia tried to shut state buildings with padlocks and chains in the capital and other cities across the country, as protests spread demanding an early parliamentary election.


Dozens of opposition activists tried to put locks on entrances to several buildings in the capital. Reuters saw two protesters being detained by police outside the State Security Service in Tbilisi.


Protests also took place in the cities of Mtskheta, Zugdidi, Poti, Telavi and Ozurgeti, with protesters putting locks on the gates of local municipalities and other state agencies.


“We won’t give officials an opportunity to work,” a protester in Ozurgeti said in a report by independent Mtavari TV.


The protests began last week after parliament failed to approve a planned electoral reform. The activists demand a switch to fully proportional representation from a system that includes single-seat constituencies, which they say entrenches ruling party candidates.


Georgia, a small former Soviet state in the Caucasus mountains, aims to integrate more closely with the West. Its domestic politics have long been volatile, overshadowed by a strained relationship with Russia, which has backed secessionist rebels since the 1990s and invaded in 2008.


Earlier this week, police used water cannon to scatter protesters outside parliament and unblock entrances to the building, arresting 37 people. Detained protesters have been sentenced to terms ranging from four to 13 days, in trials which the opposition called politically motivated.


The opposition plans to hold a big rally on Monday in Tbilisi.


Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia said on Tuesday blocking entrances to state institutions was illegal.


“Freedom of expression in the country is fully protected by law, but in case of illegal blocking of the state institutions, the police will act within the law,” Gakharia told reporters.



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#18 BansheeOne


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Posted 25 November 2019 - 0646 AM

Hezbollah supporters attack Lebanon anti-graft protesters

November 25, 2019, 12:07 AM UTC

Beirut (AFP) - Supporters of the Hezbollah and Amal movements attacked Lebanese anti-government protesters in Beirut on Monday, with army reinforcements intervening to diffuse tensions.

Shortly before midnight on Sunday, men on foot and scooters arrived at a roadblock set up by anti-graft protesters across a key street in the capital, local television showed.

They shouted insults and chanted in support of the chiefs of the Shiite movements Hezbollah and Amal, before briefly breaking through and attacking some demonstrators.

Those at the roadblock chanted "peaceful, peaceful", as the security forces and army reinforcements deployed in a thick line between both sides in the early hours of Monday morning.

The counter-protesters also headed to a main nerve centre of protests nearby and destroyed tents there, a local television channel said.

The tensions came after a peaceful day of demonstrations, more than a month into a spontaneous nationwide street movement against the political elite.

On Saturday, Lebanese security forces briefly detained five youths, including three minors, for allegedly pulling down a sign for President Michel Aoun's political party in the town of Hammana east of Beirut, sparking outrage on social media.

Security forces released them after midnight, the Committee of Lawyers for the Defence of Protesters said.

The army said two of the children were 15 years old and the third was 12.

"Down with the regime that arrests children," a Twitter user said.

"When a 12-year-old child manages to shake the state's throne, you know the state is corrupt," another wrote.

- Hundreds of arrests -

During the first month of demonstrations, security forces arrested 300 people including 12 minors who were released within 24 to 48 hours, according to the lawyers' committee.

But 11 people -- including two minors -- remain in detention accused of attacking a hotel in the southern city of Tyre during the first week of the uprising.

The demonstrators managed to bring down the government less than two weeks into the protests, but it remains in a caretaker capacity and no new cabinet has since been formed.

Late Sunday, protesters blocked major roads in several parts of the country and called for a general strike the following day in protest at the lack of progress in forming a fresh government.

Earlier, hundreds had gathered in protest centres in Beirut, the northern city of Tripoli and in Tyre.

In Beirut's Martyrs' Square, hundreds of women and men demanded their rights, some waving the national red and white flag or chanting "Revolution, Revolution!"


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#19 BansheeOne


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Posted 28 November 2019 - 0611 AM

Iraq protests: Curfew imposed after Iranian consulate set alight in Najaf

By Reuters

Iraqi protesters stormed the Iranian consulate in the southern city of Najaf and set fire to the building on Wednesday bringing a new level of violence to demonstrations aimed at the downfall of a government backed by Tehran.

It was the strongest expression yet of the anti-Iranian sentiment of Iraqi demonstrators, who have taken to the streets for weeks in Baghdad and the Shi'ite Muslim-majority south - and have been gunned down in their hundreds by Iraqi security forces.

Staff at the consulate had evacuated shortly before demonstrators broke in, police and civil defence first responders said. There were no immediate reports of casualties.

Local authorities imposed a curfew following the incident, state media reported.

The protests that began in Baghdad on Oct. 1 and have spread through southern cities are the most complex challenge facing the Shi'ite-dominated ruling class that has controlled state institutions and patronage networks since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Sunni dictator Saddam Hussein.

Young, mostly Shi'ite protesters say politicians are corrupt, beholden to foreign powers especially Iran and blame them for a failure to recover from years of conflict despite relative calm since the defeat of Islamic State in 2017.

Protesters blocked roads with burning tyres in southern Iraq and clashed with police in Baghdad earlier on Wednesday, aiming to use economic disruption as leverage to push the government from power and root out state corruption.

Security forces shot dead two people in Kerbala, near Najaf, overnight and two in Baghdad on Wednesday, while a fifth person died when security forces opened fire during protests in the southern oil capital of Basra.

Demonstrators prevented government employees getting to work in Basra by installing concrete barriers painted as mock-up coffins of relatives killed in weeks of unrest, a Reuters witness said.

Authorities have warned against exploitation of the unrest by armed groups, especially should protest-related violence spread to northern Iraq, where IS militants are waging an insurgency.


Colombia strike begins as week of protests rolls on

10:10 am on 28 November 2019

Colombian unions and student groups held their second national strike in less than week on Wednesday in honor of a dead demonstrator and to protest rumored government economic plans, corruption and police violence.

The series of protests began last week with a 250,000-person march and a nationwide strike.

Demonstrators are rallying against neo-liberal economic plans - like a rise in the pension age and a cut to the minimum wage for young people - that President Ivan Duque denies supporting, as well what they say is a lack of government action to stop corruption and the murder of hundreds of human rights activists.

Marches have attracted thousands of peaceful demonstrators, but Thursday and Friday were also marked by the destruction of mass transit stations, curfews in Cali and Bogota and the deaths of three people killed by security forces.


Saturday's marches took a dark turn when 18-year-old protester Dilan Cruz was fatally injured by a tear gas canister fired by the ESMAD riot police.

Cruz died on Monday and has become a symbol for protesters, who allege the ESMAD is using excessive force dispersing protesters. His private memorial service was held on Wednesday morning, and his family has called for nonviolence.

The National Strike Committee, comprised of major unions and student organizations, is demanding the government dissolve the force and "purify" the police.

Talks between the committee and the government have stalled amid union demands Duque meet with them without the presence of business leaders or other groups.

The committee has also demanded a rejection of the government's tax reform proposal, which includes a cut in business duties.

Mr Duque announced several changes to the proposal this week at the cost of some $930 million - including the return of value added tax to the poorest 20 percent of Colombians and lower contributions to healthcare by minimum wage pensioners.

Meanwhile, his promise to hold a social issues-focused national dialogue through March has sparked derision among marchers and opposition politicians, who see it as a tepid response to growing discontent.

Mr Duque's administration has been plagued by problems during his nearly 16 months in office, including a combative congress, low approval ratings and unsuccessful legislative efforts.

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#20 BansheeOne


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Posted 08 December 2019 - 0428 AM

That's some civil disturbances.


December 7, 2019 / 12:49 PM / Updated 17 hours ago
Rocket hits Iraqi cleric's home following deadly Baghdad attack
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - A rocket fired from a drone targeted the home of populist Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr on Saturday, lawmakers from his Saeroon party said, following one of the capital’s bloodiest nights in recent weeks.

The drone attack, which caused little damage and left no casualties, followed a deadly attack by armed men near Baghdad’s main protest site on Friday night, which left at least 23 dead, police and medical sources said.


Nearly 130 others were wounded by gunfire and stabbings targeting anti-government protesters at the Sinak bridge near Tahrir Square, the sources said. The death toll includes three members of the police.


Thousands of Iraqis have occupied the central square and three nearby bridges which lead to the city’s Green Zone, Iraq’s political center, for more than two months, calling for a complete uprooting of the political system.


Friday and Saturday’s attacks came days after Iraq’s prime minister, Adel Abdul Mahdi, said he would resign.


Sadr, a mercurial figure who has supported the protests but not thrown his full weight behind them, was in Iran at the time of the drone attack on his home in the southern holy city of Najaf, a source in his office said.


However, a spokesman for his party said the incidents were aimed at pressuring both protesters and political leaders to accept whichever candidate is nominated for the premiership by the ruling elite.


“The Sinak massacre and the bombing of (Sadr’s home) is geared at pushing the acceptance of the candidate for prime minister,” said Jaafar Al-Mousawi.


Iranian officials including the powerful commander of its Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, stepped in to prevent Abdul Mahdi’s resignation in October, Reuters reported.


Soleimani was reported to be in Baghdad this week, negotiating with political leaders for a new consensus candidate for prime minister.




The weekend’s developments marked a drastic escalation to quell the demonstrations, the country’s largest in decades. More than 430 people have been killed since protests began on Oct. 1.


Security sources said they could not identify the gunmen who attacked protesters on Friday night.


The incident was followed by further intimidation early on Saturday morning, as more unknown gunmen drove in a convoy down the main riverside street which leads to Tahrir Square, firing a volley of shots toward it.


The heavily armed, masked gunmen roamed the street near Tahrir Square and attempted to advance onto it but were eventually turned around at a checkpoint manned by Iraq’s security forces, witnesses said.


Friday’s deadly attack came hours after Washington imposed sanctions on three Iranian-backed Iraqi paramilitary leaders whom it accused of directing the killing of Iraqi protesters. A senior U.S. Treasury official suggested the sanctions were timed to distance those figures from any role in forming a new government.






And the always-dependable French.


December 7, 2019 / 3:44 PM / Updated 18 hours ago


More French protests see roads blocked, trains disrupted and scuffles in Paris
PARIS (Reuters) - Truckers blocked roads in about 10 regions around France on Saturday to protest against a planned reduction in tax breaks on diesel for road transport, while train and metro services remained heavily disrupted by a strike against pension reform.

In Paris there were scuffles with police in the Denfert Rochereau area of the residential Left Bank as several hundred “yellow vest” protesters continued their weekly demonstrations, but numbers were relatively small compared with previous weeks as the transport strike made it hard to reach the capital.


The combined pressure of the yellow vest movement over the cost of living and union protests against pension reform are a major challenge to President Emmanuel Macron’s efforts to balance the state budget and introduce more environmentally friendly legislation in the second half of his mandate.


Truckers federation Otre (Organisation des Transporteurs Routiers Européens) said it opposed an increase in taxes on diesel for commercial vehicles as part of the government’s draft 2020 budget.





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