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

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Religion Aside, Christmas Gains Popularity in Communist Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal 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.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid