Voices of Dissent Spreading Across Middle East, Now Being Raised Against Saudi Kingdom
Interview with T. Kumar, advocacy director with Amnesty International, conducted by Scott Harris
Widespread protests challenging autocratic regimes and monarchies across the Middle East and North Africa have now spread from Tunisia and Egypt to other countries in the Middle East, including: Bahrain, Yemen, Algeria, Morocco, Iran, Djibouti, Jordan, Kuwait, Sudan, Syria and Oman. However, the worst violence in this wave of unrest is now occurring in Libya, where the embattled leader Moammar Gadhafi, in power for 41 years, is engaged in a pitched battle with large numbers of his people allied with former members of the nation's military. Violently repressed protests in major cities soon devolved to an armed revolt, with large portions of Libya's territory now under the control of anti-Gadhafi rebels. The U.S. and United Nations have responded to the crisis by demanding Gadhafi step down from power and leave the country. Washington has imposed a freeze on Libya's U.S.-based assets and the European Union is enforcing an arms embargo.