Forced out of office

Here is a list of the principal popular uprisings that have led to the overthrow of heads of state since 1989:

    Georgia's 'velvet revolution' is the latest to oust a government leader

    POLAND, April 1989: The Soviet-backed regime bows to massive street-level pressure from trade union Solidarity, organises elections and non-Communists sweep to power.

    EAST GERMANY, Oct 18, 1989: The fall of the Berlin wall and massive demonstrations in favour of reform and freedom prove too much for East German leader Erich Honecker, who resigns.

    CZECHOSLOVAKIA, Nov 1989: Hundreds of thousands of Czechs conduct a "Velvet Revolution" that leads to the collapse of the Communist regime.

    ROMANIA, December 1989: Riots break out in Timisoara, triggering a mass uprising. Troops fire on protesters, killing over 1,000. Despotic president Nicolae Ceausescu is summarily executed.

    MALI, March 1991: President Moussa Traore is toppled in a coup and thrown into jail after dozens are killed in a popular insurrection.

    INDONESIA, May 1998: A month of demonstrations and rioting, in which 1,200 people are killed, forces Indonesian dictator General Suharto to step down.

    YUGOSLAVIA, October 9, 2000: Autocratic Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic meets crushing defeat in an election and is driven from power in a huge popular uprising.

    ECUADOR, January 21, 2000: President Jamil Mahuad finally loses the support of the army and is forced to resign after disastrous economic policies send thousands onto the streets.

    PERU, Nov 19, 2000: President Alberto Fujimori flees to Japan after a massive political corruption scandal causes uproar. He announces his resignation by fax.

    THE PHILIPPINES: January 20, 2001: Former movie idol Joseph Estrada sees his star wane when the army backs mass street protests against widespread corruption within the regime.

    MADAGASCAR, Dec 16, 2001: A popular revolt over the first round results of a presidential election drags on for seven months and eventually leads to downfall of longtime head of state Didier Ratsiraka.

    ARGENTINA, Dec 20, 2001: A desperate economic crisis provokes huge demonstrations, rioting and looting in which 27 people are killed. President Fernando de la Rua is forced to step down.

    BOLIVIA, Oct 17, 2003: President Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada resigns after a month of demonstrations over a controversial gas export deal. The protests paralyse the country and 80 people die.

    SOURCE: AFP


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