News / Middle East

Egypt Police Disperse Anti-Mubarak Protesters

Thousands of demonstrators protest in central Cairo demanding the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak and calling for reforms, 25 Jan 2011
Thousands of demonstrators protest in central Cairo demanding the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak and calling for reforms, 25 Jan 2011

Egyptian police fired tear gas and beat anti-government protesters to clear thousands of people from a central Cairo square Wednesday, after the largest demonstrations in years against President Hosni Mubarak's decades-old rule.

Three people were reported to have died in the nationwide unrest inspired by Tunisia's uprising. Two protesters were killed during a demonstration in the port city of Suez while a police officer died from injuries sustained during the protests in Cairo.

Waves of rock-throwing demonstrators occupied Cairo's Tahrir Square for hours Tuesday, beating back attempts to dislodge them by police wielding tear gas and water cannons. Several thousand people demonstrated in Alexandria, and there were reports of large protests in other cities including Mansoura and Mahalla al-Kobra.

Tuesday's demonstrations began peacefully, with police at first showing restraint. Several people said the clashes began in Cairo after protesters attempted to take control of a water cannon truck.

Such a coordinated wave of anti-government protests has not been seen in Egypt since Mr. Mubarak took power in 1981 after former President Anwar Sadat was assassinated by Islamists.

Egyptians Tuesday called for political and economic reforms in rallies inspired by demonstrations in Tunisia that led to the ouster of that country's president earlier this month. The unrest took place despite government warnings that demonstrators could be arrested.

The protests were promoted online by groups saying they speak for young Egyptians frustrated with the kind of poverty and oppression that triggered Tunisia's unrest.

Activists from Egypt's Kifaya (Enough) movement - a coalition of government opponents - and the 6th of April Youth Movement organized the protests on the Facebook  and Twitter  social networking websites. Western news reports said Twitter  appeared to be blocked in Egypt later Tuesday.

Legal parties such as the liberal Wafd, as well as the banned Muslim Brotherhood - Egypt's largest and best organized opposition group - did not formally endorse the demonstrations, but a number of their members took part.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Tuesday that Washington supports the "fundamental right of expression and assembly," but she urged Egyptians to refrain from violence.

Emergency laws in place since 1981 outlaw demonstrations without prior permission. Opposition groups said they were denied such permits for Tuesday's rallies, planned to coincide with a national holiday honoring the police, a key force in keeping President Mubarak in power.

Since Tunisia's anti-government protests, at least five Egyptians have attempted suicide by self-immolation, imitating the young Tunisian whose burning death in December 1 galvanized protesters there.

NEW: Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

China to Open Stock Markets to Pension Funds

In unprecedented move, government to soon allow local pension funds to invest up to $94 billion in domestic shares More

1 Billion People Used Facebook on Single Day

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg praised the accomplishment in a posting on the social media site 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.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs