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Kuwait Police Fire Tear Gas to Break Up Fresh Demos

Kuwaiti riot police on Saturday used tear gas and batons to disperse hundreds of stateless demonstrators for the second day in a row and arrested dozens, witnesses and a rights group said.

A day after riot police beat stateless protesters demanding citizenship in Jahra, northwest of Kuwait City, demonstrations expanded on Saturday to include Sulaibiya, west of the capital.

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Al-Arabi Says Arab League to Reassess Syria Mission

The Arab League is to reassess the work of its heavily criticized observer mission in Syria at a meeting later this month, the organization’s chief Nabil al-Arabi said on Saturday.

"There is an overall reassessment of the work of the observer mission which we will discuss at the next ministerial meeting to be held in Cairo on Saturday, January 21," Arabi told Agence France Presse during a visit to Oman.

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ElBaradei Won’t Run for Egypt Presidency for Lack of Democracy

The ex-head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog and Nobel laureate Mohammed ElBaradei said on Saturday he would not run for the Egyptian presidency, saying there is still no real democracy in the country.

"My conscience does not allow me to run for the presidency or any other official position unless there is real democracy," ElBaradei said in a statement received by Agence France Presse.

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Qatar’s Emir Favors Sending Arab Troops to Syria

The Emir of Qatar has said that Arab troops should be sent to Syria to stop a deadly crackdown that has claimed the lives of thousands of people over the past 10 months.

Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani's comments to CBS "60 Minutes," which will be aired Sunday, are the first statements by an Arab leader calling for the deployment of troops inside Syria.

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Tunisia Amnesties Thousands on Anniversary of Ben Ali’s Ouster

Tunisia Saturday granted an amnesty or conditional release from prison to 9,000 detainees to mark the first anniversary of the fall of despot Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, officials said.

"On the occasion of the first anniversary of the Tunisian revolution the justice ministry has announced that 9,000 detainees will be pardoned or benefit from a conditional release," the justice ministry said in a statement.

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Top Syria Army Defector to Set up High Military Council

A top Syrian army defector will announce later on Saturday the creation of a high military council that will oversee military operations against the embattled regime of Bashar Assad, his media advisor told Agence France Presse.

General Mostafa Ahmad al-Sheikh, the most senior commander to defect from the Syrian army, will make the announcement in Turkey, where he sought refuge earlier this month, Fahad Almasri said in a telephone interview.

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Asma Assad: Syria’s Marie-Antoinette?

Not so long ago, she was the darling of the international press, described as a "rose in the desert" and "a ray of light in a country full of shadow zones."

But today, Syria's First Lady is being likened to a modern-day Marie-Antoinette, drawing criticism for staying mum on a crisis that has left more than 5,000 people dead in her country.

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Basra Suicide Attack against Shiites Kills 50 as Millions Throng Karbala for Arbaeen Climax

A suicide attack on Shiite pilgrims on the outskirts of the main southern Iraqi city of Basra killed at least 50 people on Saturday, at the conclusion of Arbaeen commemorations, officials said.

Riyadh Abdulamir, head of the health department in Basra province, said 50 people were killed and 100 wounded in the 9:00 am (0600 GMT) attack just west of Basra city.

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Report: U.S. Contingency Plans Drawn in Case of Israeli Strike on Iran

The U.S. government is concerned that Israel is preparing to take military action against Iran, and has stepped up contingency planning to safeguard U.S. facilities in the region, The Wall Street Journal reported late Friday.

The newspaper said President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and other top officials have delivered a series of private messages to Israeli leaders, warning about the dire consequences of a strike.

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Obama, Erdogan Support Syrian People’s Democracy Rights

U.S. President Barack Obama spoke by telephone Friday with Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan about the situation in Syria and Iran's nuclear program, the White House said.

"They agreed that the U.S. and Turkey should continue to support the legitimate demands for democracy for the Syrian people and condemned the brutal action of the Assad regime," it said in a statement.

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