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Palestine (and Beyond) Live Coverage: Minister of Finance Tries to Resign Amid Financial Crisis

See also Syria Live Coverage: Fighting on the Iraq Border
Saturday's Egypt (and Beyond) Live Coverage: At Least 1 Killed in Continuing Protests in Mansoura

Minister of Finance Nabil Qassis2155 GMT: Egypt. Two people have been killed and more than 400 injured in clashes between protesters and police in Port Said.

At least 260 of the wounded suffered from tear gas inhalation. A 21-year-old protester was slain and at least 39 people were injured by gunfire, including seven members of the security forces.

There was also confusion with reports of confrontations between the police and the army, as army colonel responsible for the unit at the Governorate building was shot in the leg and a Central Security Forces (CSF) conscript was killed by unknown assailants.

The official spokesperson of the Egyptian armed forces, Colonel Ahmed Ali, denied the reports: "It is completely untrue that armed forces units in Port Said exchanged fired with police forces during the clashes."

1855 GMT:Yemen. President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi has met southern separatists for the first time, ahead of a conference aimed at drafting a new Constitution before elections in 2014.

At the meeting in the southern port city of Aden, Hadi promised the separatists a fair solution to their grievances: "We have an historic opportunity to resolve all our problems including the most persistent ones via comprehensive national dialogue."

The President urged the separatists to support the conference, scheduled to start on 18 March.

1825 GMT: Egypt. US Secretary of State John Kerry, after talks with President Morsi, has pledged $450 million to support the faltering economy while warning "more hard work" is needed.

Kerry also urged Mr Morsi to ensure that next month's Parliamentary elections, boycotted by the opposition National Salvation Front, "are free, fair and transparent".

The Secretary of State said that Washington would now be providing the first $190 million of the pledged $450 million in budget support funds.

On Saturday, Kerry called on the Government to reach a deal on a $4.8 billion from the International Monetary Fund.

1815 GMT: Tunisia. Angry protesters in Thala in northern Tunisia have hurled stones at the car of the leader of the Ennahda Party, the dominant faction in the ruling coalition.

At the sight of Rached Ghannouchi, dozens of people shouted, “Get out!”.

Ghannouchi and Ennadha members were in the town for the reburial of an activist executed in 1963, under the regime of Tunisia's founding President, Habib Bourguiba.

Protests have escalated since the assassination of opposition leader Chokri Belaid on 6 Februaryy.

1705 GMT: Libya. Gas exports to Italy from the Mellitah complex in northwestern Libya have been suspended since Saturday following clashes between rival militias in the area, Libya's National Oil Corporation (NOC) and Italy's ENI said.

Mustafa Sunalla, an NOC deputy chairman, said the Corporation's officials, the Libyan Prime Minister's office, and the Ministry of Defense ministry were holding round-the-clock meetings to try to resolve the situation.

Thousands of former insurgents in the 2011 uprising against the Qaddafi regime have been employed in the Petroleum Faculty Guard to look after oil and gas installations.

But in recent months protesters and local militia have disrupted operations in Libya's main industry. In July they forced the closure of three major oil terminals.

1550 GMT: Libya. Officials have released 20 Egyptian Coptic Christians held on charges of proselytising, after the intervention of the Egyptian Consulate in Benghazi.

Another 23 Copts are being held after authorities summoned a church pastor to testify in a case.

1530 GMT: Mali. A French soldier has been killed in fighting with Islamist insurgents in northern Mali, the French government has said.

The paratrooper, killed on Saturday in the Adrar des Ifoghas mountains, is the third French serviceman to die since the start of France's military intervention in mid-January.

French and Chadian forces have been involved for weeks in fighting with insurgents, who were pushed out of towns and cities in northern Mali in January, near the Algerian border and near the town of Gao. The Chadian military has claimed it killed two top Islamist leaders since Friday.

At least 15 insurgents were killed in fighting to clear out caves where they had taken refuge, the French army said. A source in the Malian military said at least 50 members of the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO) were slain in the clashes near Gao.

1400 GMT: Egypt. Protesters in Ismailia have announced that they are launching a civil disobedience campaign, joining nearby Port Said and Mansoura in their campaigns.

Demonstrators blocked the main road to the central Governorate building this morning and were planning a rally in front of the building this afternoon. They are calling for Prime Minister Hisham Qandil to be sacked, amendments to the new constitution passed in December 2012, and the elimination of the elections law.

Protesters also attempted to block the railway, halting the train route from Cairo to Port Said, but police forces intervened.

In fellow Suez Canal city of Port Said, where there have been sustained protests since late January, demonstrators clashed with police after the Ministry of Interior decided to move 39 prisoners awaiting a verdict over last year's incident in Port Said stadium in which 74 fans died.

Verdicts on 21 other defendants on 26 January sparked protests in which at least 40 people, almost all civilians, were slain.

A security official said protesters threw petrol bombs and stones at the Port Said police station. Officers responded with tear gas.

The Ministry of Interior said it was moving the 39 detainee because it wanted to avoid unrest.

Suez, Mahalla, and Tanta have also joined the civil disobedience campaigns.

1023 GMT: Egypt. The retrial of former President Hosni Mubarak, sentenced last year to life in prison, will be on 13 April.

Mubarak was convicted of ordering the killing of protesters during the January-February 2011 uprising against his rule. Former Ministry of Interior Habib el-Adly, six aides, and Mubarak's sons Gamal and Alaa will also be tried.

1007 GMT: Palestine. Nabil Qassis, the Palestinian Authority's Minister of Finance in the West Bank, has submitted his resignation.

PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad has accepted his decision, but President Mahmoud Abbas has rejected it, saying he will meet with Qassis today.

The minister decided to leave office following criticism by trade unions over his remarks calling for a reduction in public sector bonuses, official sources said.

The PA is in a financial crisis, amid an Israeli cut-off of tax revenues and problems with economic management, which has halted payment to public-sector employees for five months. Health workers and teachers have gone on strike, while government initiatives to increase revenue by collecting a year's electricity and water bills from the public have been hampered by street protests.

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