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Self-immolation rising in the Arab world

Jan. 19, 2011 at 7:39 AM   |   Comments

CAIRO, Jan. 19 (UPI) -- An Egyptian who set himself afire died in a growing trend in the Arab world to copy the Tunisian whose self-immolation sparked a revolution, a report says.

A 25-year old Egyptian died Tuesday after setting himself afire on the roof of his house, one of three Egyptians citizens to commit a similar act, al-Arabiya reported.

In the past week there have been 10 cases of self-immolation in the Arab world, the network said.

Another Egyptian set himself alight outside government headquarters in Cairo but was not seriously hurt. A third Egyptian doused himself with a flammable substance on a busy Cairo street Monday, the network said. Egyptian police said they arrested a man caught carrying cans of gasoline outside the parliament building in Cairo, the report said.

Five similar incidents took place in Algeria where violent protests over rising unemployment and high food prices have also occurred, the network said. The latest incident was on the border with Tunisia where a 36-year-old unemployed man set himself on fire, the report said.

In Mauritania a man set himself on fire outside presidential offices in Nouakchott, the report said.

On Dec. 17 in Tunis, Mohammed Bouazizi, 26, set himself on fire to protest growing unemployment and high food prices. His death sparked an uprising in the country that forced Tunisian President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali to flee the country with his family.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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