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Next up: Djibouti?

Next up: Djibouti?

Another North African government faces mass protests

Thousands of people have taken to the streets of Djibouti to call for President Ismael Omar Guelleh to step down.

The demonstrators were reportedly monitored closely by security forces in riot gear.

Mr Guelleh’s family has governed the Red Sea city state since independence from France in 1977.

Like Bahrain, Djibouti is a tiny country with a major U.S. military presence. More than 2,000 U.S. troops are based at Camp Lemonier, a former French military installation. Djibouti is in a  prime spot for U.S. counterterrorism operations, bordering Somalia and just across the Gulf of Aden from Yemen.  

Guelleh, accused of targeting opposition leaders for arrest and shutting down critical newspapers in previous elections, was received at the White House in May and met with Vice President Joe Biden.