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Now, Obama warns Bahrain, Libya and Yemen

Obama studies the mideast in a microscope at Intel in Oregon l2-18-11

A week after having warned Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak into retirement (see related link below), President Obama is now warning the ruling powers in Yemen, Libya and Bahrain about how to treat their people when they are protesting. (Not to mention warning the governor of Wisconsin.)

Obama issued his tardy instructions to the three countries (see full presidential text below) while on a tour of Intel's semiconductor manufacturing facility in Hillsboro, Ore. where he spoke about winning the future at home somehow. Obama also expressed sympathy to the foreign families of those killed during demonstrations.

Not surprising that the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize would oppose violence. He's just....

...involving the U.S. publicly not as late in these latest incidents as he was in Egypt's street convulsions, where many accused him of diddling too long and sending mixed messages nuanced for diplomats and academics in their study, not screaming demonstrators in dirty streets filled with U.S.-made tear gas.

Statement by the president on violence in Bahrain, Libya and Yemen

I am deeply concerned by reports of violence in Bahrain, Libya and Yemen.

The United States condemns the use of violence by governments against peaceful protesters in those countries and wherever else it may occur. We express our condolences to the family and friends of those who have been killed during the demonstrations.

Wherever they are, people have certain universal rights including the right to peaceful assembly.

The United States urges the governments of Bahrain, Libya and Yemen to show restraint in responding to peaceful protests, and to respect the rights of their people.    ####

UPDATE: Late Friday afternoon the White House prolvided this account of Obama's phone conversation with the King of Bahrain:

President Obama spoke with King Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa of Bahrain this evening to discuss the ongoing situation in Bahrain. The President reiterated his condemnation of the violence used against peaceful protesters, and strongly urged the government of Bahrain to show restraint, and to hold those responsible for the violence accountable.

As a long-standing partner of Bahrain, the President said that the United States believes that the stability of Bahrain depends upon respect for the universal rights of the people of Bahrain, and a process of meaningful reform that is responsive to the aspirations of all Bahrainis.    ####

Related Item:

Obama warns Mubarak: 'No going back'

 -- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo: Obama monitors the Mideast through an Intel electron microscope in Oregon. Credit: Kevin Lamarque / Reuters

 
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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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