Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

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Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by DJKeefy »

Man sets himself on fire in protest at the state of the Egyptian economy.

The New Arab reported the man, said to be 30-year-old taxi driver Ashraf Mohammed Shaheen, started criticising the country’s high prices and poor living conditions before dousing himself in petrol and setting himself alight in Alexandria, in northern Egypt.

In the horrifying video, onlookers can be seen rushing towards the man to put out the flames, beating them with clothing and spraying a fire extinguisher.

WARNING: The video under the spoiler contains GRAPHIC IMAGES.
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A witness said the man was taken to hospital – where doctors reportedly found he had burns on over 95 per cent of his body.

His condition is currently unknown.

Social media users have compared the incident to Mohamed Bouazizi, a Tunisian street vendor who set himself on fire and died in 2010 after being harassed by police who confiscated his wares – sparking protests which led to the Arab Spring.

Egyptians have experienced a sharp rise in the price of essentials since President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took power in 2013 – leaving an increasing number of people unable to afford basic commodities.


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Re: Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by Horus »

Truly horrific to be driven to take that sort of action to make a protest, similar to the actions of a suicide bomber, but at least in this case he only injured himself.
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Re: Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by DJKeefy »

Life is getting very difficult for many Egyptians, high food prices, no work etc, it looks like its going to get a lot worse too :(
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Re: Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by Major Thom »

I have heard that there may be protests about prices nationwide on 11/11, don't know if it's true or not.

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Re: Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by carrie »

In Australia or in Egypt?

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Re: Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by newcastle »

Major Thom wrote:I have heard that there may be protests about prices nationwide on 11/11, don't know if it's true or not.
It's true in the sense that the "usual suspects" will continue to foment discord on any pretext.

Several MB supporters have been rounded up for planning protests next month.

http://www.egyptindependent.com/news/mu ... sts-nov-11

It's likely that any protests, organised or spontaneous, will be give short shrift by the authorities.

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Re: Egyptian man burns himself alive in protest

Post by Hafiz »

Awful and sad, but unlike the Tunisian example, where there was a direct link to government abuse and that man’s poverty, this might be different. Taxi drivers in Alex are not always the poorest of the poor. But maybe the poorest are passive and, generally, they are not in Alex..

Talking of which, regional figures on poverty, or indeed on anything, are hard to get. Possibly because they would show wide disparities and this might get the punters thinking.

The latest national poverty figures issued by the government put about 28% of the population below the poverty line.

Poverty in Cairo and Alex is much lower than in rural areas.

The only recent reference I’ve read on the rate for rural Upper Egypt is 57%. This is published in the well regarded, but hardly pro-government, The Arabist in a recent article:
http://arabist.net/blog/2016/8/2/in-tra ... ng-economy

Other, dated, figures put it at 51% http://www.ruralpovertyportal.org/count ... tags/egypt.

So if its 57% in Upper Egypt the poverty rate is likely much lower than the national average in Cairo and Alex.

Trouble rarely comes from rural disaffection but from pesky urbanites so governments usually look after the cities. On the other hand costs of living are higher in cities.

If the life of an Alexandrian taxi driver is hard the lives of Upper Egyptians are probably much worse.

On a positive note the World Bank has recently announced a major $500 million 4 year (?) initiative for Upper Egypt. It would create jobs but has a focus on local government reform and infrastructure. http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P1573 ... tDocuments and http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P1573 ... b=overview. It’s the usual World Bank stuff but in this case with a priority on Sohag and Qena – which is interesting given the minority populations in these two cities. Good luck on trying to reform local government whilst national government is untouched.

On another negative note Reuters reports core inflation, which most affects the poor, as up, although al Ahram is spouting that its down.
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSEONGA60T8

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