News / Africa

Protesters Pack Cairo's Tahrir Square, Despite Government's Concessions

A demonstrator uses a portable loudspeaker as he shouts slogans against the military council during a mass protest in Alexandria, in support of mass protests in Tahrir square in Cairo, November 25, 2011.
A demonstrator uses a portable loudspeaker as he shouts slogans against the military council during a mass protest in Alexandria, in support of mass protests in Tahrir square in Cairo, November 25, 2011.

Tens of thousands of Egyptians gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday where they pressed their demand for an end to military rule despite the ruling military's appointment of a new prime minister.

The number of protesters has continued to swell over the past week, in spite of a series of concessions announced by the leadership. At least 41 people have been killed in protest-related clashes across the country.

The unrest is taking place as Egypt prepares for the start of parliamentary elections on Monday. It will be the first polling since former President Hosni Mubarak's February resignation amid a popular uprising.

On Friday, Egyptian authorities announced  that voting will take place over two days, instead of one day. Reuters news quotes an Interior Ministry official as saying the change is designed to ease concerns about overcrowding and security issues.

Earlier Friday, newly appointed Prime Minister Kamal el-Ganzouri said he would not be able to form a new Cabinet before Monday's polling. He also said military rulers had given him more authority than his predecessor, Essam Sharaf.

Former Prime Minister Sharaf's civilian Cabinet resigned earlier this week, as part of the government's concessions to protesters. The government also announced that presidential elections would be held before July 2012.

The concessions have had little impact on the sentiments of protesters. Some protesters touted Friday's so-called "million-man" rally as the "last chance" for the military council to quit. The French news agency said the imam leading noon prayers in Tahrir Square urged demonstrators to stay in the square until their demands were met.

Both the U.S. and the European Union on Friday urged Egypt to speed up the transition to civilian government.

Also Friday, three American students arrested during a protest in Egypt were released and were preparing to fly home.

Derrick Sweeney, Luke Gates and Gregory Porter attended American University in Cairo and were arrested Sunday on the roof of a building near Tahrir Square.  Officials accused them of throwing firebombs at security forces who were fighting protesters.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

Join the conversation on our social journalism site - Middle East Voices. Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Computer Crash Halts US Visa, Passport Operation

Problems with database have resulted in extensive backlog of applications, affected State Department's consular offices all over the world More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

World Bank: Boko Haram Stalls African Aid Projects

Islamist group’s terrorism sets back agriculture, health efforts in Cameroon, Chad and Nigeria More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid