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ARABICA: A Quick Shot Of What's Brewing In The Arab World
Kristen Gillespie

A R A B I C A ارابيكا

EGYPTIAN JUSTICE
Despite a revolution that culminated on February 11, 2011 when President Hosni Mubarak was ousted from power, Egypt's unresolved past continues to haunt the present. Deposed dictator Hosni Mubarak returned to court as the prosecution presented its case against him. A group of lawyers have demanded that treason be added to the charges against Mubarak, along with trying the former vice president and head of intelligence, Omar Suleiman.

*Suleiman, one of Mubarak's chief accomplices, has so far escaped any censure for his role in the previous regime. Lawyers also demanded that the head of the ruling military council Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi be tried for perjury and obstruction of justice for testifying that Mubarak had no role in killing 856 protesters during the January 25th revolution.

LIBYAN FINANCES
Libya's Foreign Minister Ashur bin Khayyal announced that the United States, France and other countries in Europe have returned $20 billion in frozen assets.

SYRIAN POLITICS
In his first speech to the nation since last June, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad repeated promises of political reforms and said a referendum on a new constitution would take place in March that will fold the opposition into the government. Assad, as regime members have done since the beginning of the uprising last March, blamed the entire course of events in Syria on an external conspiracy.

*The sideshow of Arab League observers continued to distract from the increased violence against Syrian civilians. The Syrian opposition announced that 22 people were killed across the country on Monday, with a 4-month-old baby in Homs as the youngest victim of the violence.

*Meanwhile, A unidentified commander from the Free Syrian Army told A-Sharq al-Awsat pan-Arab daily that paid thugs, known as shibaha, are selling weapons for army defectors. "We pay them $500 for an RPG and $2,000 for an AK-47," he said. The FSA purchases the weapons with donations from Syrian citizens, he said.

Jan. 11, 2012

photo credit: illustir

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Three Clear Signs That Belarus Is About To Enter The Ukraine War

Troops are amassing at the Belarus-Ukraine border for a second straight day, while pontoon crossings are being constructed. Most importantly, strongman Alexander Lukashenko is increasingly seen as no longer having the option to say No.

Three Clear Signs That Belarus Is About To Enter The Ukraine War

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko at 2022 Allied Resolve Military Exercise

Anna Akage

Another clear indication that Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko will join Russia’s war against Ukraine came early Tuesday morning: Belarus began rapidly deploying its troops to the Ukrainian border, and the country’s defense ministry announced a "sudden inspection of combat readiness."

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Though such sudden exercises have occurred at other times since the beginning of the war, this time it comes amid an accumulation of signs that point to Lukashenko preparing to give final orders.

For the second day in a row, the Belaruski Gayun media recorded increasing numbers of troops amassing Wednesday on the border with Ukraine.

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