April 21, 2011

Beware the Wrath of Arab World's Rural Poor

Rami Khouri, Daily Star

AP Photo

In Egypt, for example, one out of every four persons in rural areas is poor, while in the cities it is one of out 10. In Tunisia, the rural poverty rate is five times as high as the urban rate; in Egypt and Morocco, rural poverty is three times higher than the urban rate. On average, 40 percent of the Arab world’s population is rural, and for decades has been declining relative to the urban population. Yet the combination of feeling stuck in poverty and being unable to do anything about this in the face of the power monopolies in the big cities is one of the factors that has clearly motivated millions of poor, marginalized and often rural Arabs to revolt in recent months.
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TAGGED: Arab, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco

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