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We will rip freedom from the throat of Mubarak – 7th February 2011: Tahrir Square

Bilal Salem Ayesh Mahmud - Martyred in Rafah (Egypt) during the Egyptian uprising - from Tahrir Square 07/02/11

7th February 2011: Tahrir Square

We will rip freedom from the throat of Mubarak”

Young man, Tahrir Square, 07/02/2011

We have seen our friends killed here in Tahrir Square. After that how can we leave now, before the revolution succeeds”

Man in his mid twenties, Tahrir Square – 07/02/2011

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A Statement from the protesters at Cairo’s Tahrir square – The President’s promises and the bloody events of Wednesday February 2

A Statement from the protesters at Cairo’s Tahrir square

to the Egyptian people

The President’s promises and the bloody events of Wednesday February 2

We the protesters who are currently on sit-in at Tahrir (liberation) square in Cairo since January 25, 2011 strongly condemn the brutal attack carried out by the governing National Democratic Party’s (NDP) mercenaries at our location on Wednesday February 2, under the guise of “rally” in support of President Mubarak. This attack continues on Thursday February 3. We regret that some young people have joined these thugs and criminals, whom the NDP is accustomed to hire during elections, to march them off after spreading several falsehoods circulated by the regime media about us and our goals. These goals that aim at changing the political system to a one that guarantees freedom, dignity and social justice to all citizens are also the goals of the youth. Therefore we want to clarify the following. Read more of this post

Photo Blog: Targeted destruction around Tahrir Square

During the last thirteen days rioting has erupted through downtown Cairo. The property damage caused in the rioting has been well targeted with branches of multinational corporations, government cars and buildings, police and army property and banks destroyed while local cafes, apartments and shops have been left untouched.

Scores have also been settled with the owner of the Spanish/Egyptian Asbestos Company, who had sentenced local workers to death by not providing proper safety equipment (http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2004/12/302626.html?c=on#c107076): his cafe in Talaat Al Harb square was burnt to the ground.

The scope of the damage clearly shows that the anger of the uprising has been pointed squarely at capitalism, imperialism and the state. Downtown Cairo has effectively been brought to a standstill with the stock exchange remaining closed. The ongoing occupation of Tahrir Square is a constant reminder that, despite the batallions of tanks occupying central Cairo, the heart of the city has been transformed into an autonomous space.

Barclays targeted near Merekaz al Shaab

Barclays Targeted

Vodafone targeted in Zamalek - Vodafone sent out mass text messages calling on people to join pro-Mubarak demonstrations

Burned out cars near government buildings on Falaky street

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“We’re not going anywhere”: Voices from Tahrir Square on the day of the martyrs

“We will stay here in Tahrir Square until we succeed, even if it takes months. We will stay here on our own if we have to”

One of a group of young Tahrir occupiers, 06/02/2011

“I hope people know that just because we’re back to work it doesn’t mean we gave up! Our Tahririans are still out there & we got their back.”

Anonymous Tweeter, 06/02/2011

Tahrir Square - 06/02/2011 - Going Nowhere

The message from the Egyptian government this morning is that life must return to normal. Yesterday an army commander, Hasan al Roweny told the Tahrir occupiers over a megaphone that (apparently) they had the right to ‘freedom of expression’ but that “we want people to go back to work and to get paid, and life to get back to normal”, “The people can stay in Tahrir, but not on the road”. The following morning the army had withdrawn many of its tanks from the streets around Tahrir Square, workers queued outside the boarded up banks, cafes and restaurants opened for the first time in days, and traffic flowed relatively freely – but the Tahrir occupiers were going nowhere.

‘Day of the Martyrs’

Today, Sunday, was described by the protestors as the ‘Day of the Martyrs’ and banners bearing the names of the over 300 people killed during the uprising were flying in the wind. An interfaith ceremony was held during the afternoon for the martyrs of the rebellion.

Ceremony for the martyrs of the Egyptian rebellion - 06/02/2011

Rather than making people go away, the manipulative government tactics used to empty the area seemed to have had the opposite effect. People showed up in their tens of thousands to  honour their dead and show Mubarak that they were not willing to give up their fight for freedom. Read more of this post

US solidarity rundown

People have been protesting across the US since late January, both in support of the Egyptian uprising and against US support for the Mubarak regime. The demos have varied greatly, from the more statist or humanitarianly focussed, to people calling actively for an end to repression and the total overthrow of the regime.

Like so many despots, made in the USA

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Solidarity with Egypt in Ramallah

Across the world people have taken to the streets in solidarity with, and inspired by, the Egyptian uprising.

A US flag burns in Ramallah in protest at US support for Israeli apartheid

Thousands of people have demonstrated in the West Bank city of Ramallah, waving Palestinian, Egyptian and Tunisian flags… And burning some American ones.

Having made several highly repressive attempts to ban Egypt solidarity demos (see HRW report), the PA ‘let’ this one go ahead, with both a uniformed police presence, and reports of plain-clothed infiltrators. The demonstrators stood not only in solidarity with the revolts in Egypt and Tunisia, but against repression in Palestine, both that of the Israeli government and the Palestinian Authority; demanding “an end to the occupation, internal division, normalization, oppressive regimes, and to US and Western complicity in maintaining Israel’s colonial system and protecting despotic Arab regimes.”  (Press Release, Ramallah Online )

Tahrir Square – Autonomy from dictatorship

It was  the day after the ‘day of departure’ – and we were just arriving…

The writing on the wall in Tahrir Square*

*The photos included with this blog were taken on a mobile phone as we were not able to take a camera into Tahrir Square, hence the poor quality

After having had a rather complicated time trying  to reach Tahrir Square yesterday – for the demonstration that the people had dubbed the ‘Day of Departure’ which saw two million rebels gather in Tahrir throughout the day- we had better luck today. The atmosphere in Cairo was distinctly different: a walk down 6th October Bridge on Friday afternoon had proved a constant struggle, with groups of volunteer neighbourhood teams, highly paranoid of international infiltrators demanding to see your passport every few meters, then telling you to turn back. Today, however, these groups were nowhere to be seen. The military, who have previously gone to great lengths to keep foreigners out of the demos were still out in great force but to our surprise appeared to have given up on hassling the few  internationals left in the city.

The general atmosphere was markedly different t Read more of this post

Cairo under military occupation

We are all a little bit occupied – But Cairo has been under an extreme form of military occupation for the past 11 days. Curfews of up to eighteen hours a day have been imposed, tanks, armoured personnel carriers and F16s have been rolled out to intimidate those determined to affect change and arrests, lethal force and extreme restrictions on movement have been used. 13 demonstrators have been killed in the last two days. Read more of this post

Interview with an Egyptian Anarchist

from Aberdeen Anarchists – http://aberdeenanarchists.wordpress.com/2011/02/04/interview-with-an-egyptian-anarchist/

Interview with an anarcho-communist activist in Freedom Square in Cairo

Please tell me your name and what movement you are from.

I’m Nidal Tahrir, from Black Flag, A small group of Anarcho-Communists in Egypt.

The world is watching Egypt, and even moving in solidarity. However, due to the internet being cut, information was difficult to find. Can you tell me about what has happened in Egypt in the past week? What did it look like from your perspective? (You can write a lot in this part.)

The situation in Egypt is So crucial right now, it begins with an invitation to the day of rage against Mubarak Regime in January 25th., no one has expected that an invitation to a day of rage from a loose group, Facebook page, not really organized called ” we are all Khalid Said”, Khalid Said is Egyptian Youth who has been killed by Mubarak police in Alexandria last summer, it was that Tuesday who begin everything, it was the spark for the whole fire, on Tuesday big demonstrations were in streets in every Egyptian town, on Wednesday begins the massacre, it begins with trying to finish the sit-in in Tahrir square on Tuesday late night, and continue in the following days, especially in Suez town, Suez has special value in every Egyptian heart, it was the centre for resistance against Zionist in 1956 and 1967, in the same district, which fought Sharon’s troops back in Egyptian-Israeli wars, Mubarak police has made a massacre, at least 4 people killed, 100 injured, Gas Bombs, rubber bullets, Fire Guns, strange yellow substance thrown above people, may be mustard gas, Friday was called the Jumu’ah of Rage, Jumu’ah is Arabic for Friday, it’s the national weekend in Egypt, in many Islamic countries also, it’s sacred day in Islam, because the big prayers in this day, called Jumu’ah prayer, it was planned for demonstrations to go on march after this pray, in the noon, the police tried to prevent the marches with all of his power and violence, there was many clashes in Cairo,(in downtown, in Mattareyah (east of Cairo)), all over Egypt, especially in Suez, Alexandria, Mahalla (in delta, one of the centers of working class), from noon to sunset people marched in Cairo to Downtown, to sit-in in Tahrir till Removal of Mubarak regime, Chanting one slogan ” People demand removal of the regime”, at sun set, 5p.m CLT, Mubarak has declared curfew and bringing army into Egyptian towns, this curfew followed by planned escape of police, letting out the criminals and thugs which called Baltagayyah, and police plan great escape of criminals in many Egyptian prisons to scare people in Egypt, no police, many army troops couldn’t control the street, scared people, it followed by news jam in Egyptian TV channels, radios, newspaper about luddites in many towns, about thieves firing at people, people organized ” people committees to secure every street, it was welcomed by the regime to make people more scared about instability in the country, but it also a point we could start from it to build workers councils. Read more of this post

Refreshingly underwhelming pro-Mubarak demo – 4/2/11

Pro Mubarak 'demo' marching toward Mohandiseen 4/2/11

Today’s pro-Mubarak demo seemed muted in comparison to the massive mobilisation at Tahrir Square. Local people are claiming that those on the demonstration were offered one hundred Egyptian pounds to attend.

We saw around 250 people on the march as it passed through Zamalek.