Mosaic News / Link TV & Al Jazeera TV (Qatar) & Al-Alam TV (Iran) & New TV (Syria) – 2011-02-11 01:06:31
World News From The Middle East:
Mubarak Stands Defiant
Mosaic News / Link TV
(February 10, 2011) — As the sun set on the 17th straight day of protest, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak refused to cede to protesters’ demands to step down, deciding instead to remain in power while delegating various responsibilities to Vice President Omar Suleiman. In a speech broadcast on state-run Egypt’s Nile TV, he said he has laid “down a clear vision to resolve this crisis.”
Al Jazeera’s Arabic language channel reports that the Egyptian army issued “CommuniquÃ© Number One,” saying it will protect the people, their interests and the country.
BBC Arabic interviews Dr. Amr al-Shobaki of the Center for Political and Strategic Studies in Cairo. He believes that the first phase of the revolution will end soon with Mubarak stepping down or handing power over to someone else. He also discusses the transitional phase after Mubarak is gone and what role the army will play.
Meanwhile, Lebanon’s New TV reports that Egyptian protesters are working hard on their slogans in order to accomplish their goals without losing their sense of humor. Watch these stories and more, tonight on Mosaic.
Anti-government Protests in Egypt’s
Tahrir Square Keep Growing
Al Jazeera TV (Qatar)
CAIRO (February 9, 2011) —
The Egyptian revolution gained new ground on its 16th day of trying to overthrow the regime. The government was forced to evacuate its main headquarters because of the protests. Officials in the People’s Assembly and the Shura Council had to evacuate their buildings as well. Protesters said they will lay siege to the radio and television building on Friday.
In Port Said, protesters set fire to the local government’s building and the governor’s car. Three people were killed and dozens were wounded in clashes with the police in Kharga city in New Valley province. The young people of the revolution reacted strongly to Vice President Omar Suleiman’s statement that Mubarak will not step down immediately.
Opposition leaders also announced their rejection of Suleiman’s statement which gave the opposition only two options, dialogue or military coup. Egyptian lawyers formed an association called the “Legal Group” to recover Egypt’s stolen wealth. Discussions about the Mubarak family’s wealth, estimated at 40-70 billion dollars, have been prevalent. Certain public figures have submitted a notice to the Egyptian Attorney General on the matter.
They sleep with and wake up to the revolution. Yesterday, the protests moved to the Egyptian People’s Assembly building. The assembly was the product of a rigged election no one acknowledged but the permanent winner: the ruling National Party. Since those clinging to power have decided to ignore the demands of a million demonstrators, the protesters must resort to new peaceful means to exert more pressure. This street is located 300 meters away from Tahrir Square.
The square has become a shrine and a stronghold for the revolutionaries. As days pass, the atmosphere in the square is increasingly heated, attracting more and more people eager for change and democracy. These protesters are still needling the current Egyptian regime and a number of similar regimes in the Arab world. Longing for change has propelled young people in the spring of their life into the movement, to be killed by real bullets in this winter’s fight for democracy. This cube was set up in the middle of Tahrir Square as a memorial for their spirit and bravery.
The United Nations and Human Rights Watch said that at least 300 people have been killed since the popular protests began. Some estimate the death toll is higher. The exact number will be revealed in the coming days. President Mubarak’s decision yesterday to form three committees doesn’t seem to have resonated with the protesters.
Vice President Omar Suleiman’s patience appears to be running out. He said openly, “we cannot stand the continuation of protests on Tahrir Square for much longer.” But these people are here for the long run. It will not be too hard for the descendents of pyramid builders to build new political landmarks for a democratic Egypt.
In the northern Egyptian province of Port Said, protesters broke the front windows of the provincial government’s building and set fire to it. In Manfalut city in Upper Egypt, thousands of protesters blocked the agricultural road between Cairo and Asyut for hours hindering traffic. They demanded Mubarak step down immediately. Workers went on strike in the Boulaqa factory, which belongs to an Egyptian company for railway products and services, demanding a raise. Hundreds of employees of the Egyptian Telecommunication Company gathered in front of its headquarters near Ramses square.
The workers demanded the company’s administration department be dismissed, the discipline council be disbanded, the return of the salary structure and the elimination of the material and moral differences between the workers. Hundreds of scholars at the National Research Center also demonstrated to demand their wages stabilize and improve.
Southern Egypt’s Demonstrators
Clash with Police
Press TV (Iran)
EL-KHARGA (February 10, 2011) — Press TV reports violence escalated in southern Egypt’s city of el-Kharga, where security forces fired live ammunition at protesters, hitting at least 60 of them. Angry protesters then attacked police and government buildings. More than 300 people have been killed so far in Egypt’s protests.
A Recap of the
16 Days of Egyptian Protests
Al-Alam TV (Iran)
The Egyptian revolution has entered its third week, as revolutionaries continue to demand President Hosni Mubarak step down and as the regime continues to trying to quell the revolution. Meanwhile, the protesters are preparing for Friday, which they say will be a decisive day. The following report highlights the most important events shaping the Egyptian revolution in the past two weeks.
This is how it all started, this young man setting himself on fire marked the beginning of an end to more than 30 years of rule. On January 25, a revolution was sparked in Egypt, a revolution that will likely continue to play out until President Hosni Mubarak has been toppled. After thirty years of complete silence, voices of freedom started to rise-up, expressing decades of anger and frustration with the regime, reaching their climax on January 28, or the Friday of Anger.
On that day, protestors came out in full force despite the heavy deployment of police and security forces. From Tahrir Square, angry protests quickly spread across Egyptian provinces in defiance of curfews initially imposed in Cairo, Alexandria and Suez. All government measures have failed to silence the angry voices of freedom.
After days of massive protests, Mubarak appeared unexpectedly on national television to reinforce his crumbling regime. He promised to implement reforms, fired his government and appointed the country’s intelligence chief as his vice president, a post that has been vacant since the assassination of former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat.
The government measures have not changed anything on the ground, as public anger continues to rage across the country. After being sworn in by Mubarak, the new government proposed some reforms that could lead to a peaceful transition of power in the country. While Mubarak wants a gradual and slow transition of power, the demonstrators want a swift and immediate transition.
The showdown between the regime and the protestors reached its peak after clashes were reported between the two sides in which camels, horses and donkeys were used. On February 2nd, or Black Wednesday as it is being referred to here in Tahrir Square, hundreds of protestors were reportedly martyred or injured in clashes. By now the revolution has spread to every Egyptian city and protestors continue to call for Mubarak’s departure.
With each new day come new developments: Friday of Departure was a day set for the toppling of the more than three decade old regime. In response, the regime opened a dialogue, which was strongly rejected by the protestors in Tahrir Square. Opposition blocks were reluctant to join the government talks.
On Monday, the “week of steadfast” was launched, with “marches of millions” scheduled for Friday, Sunday and Tuesday in preparation for what they refer to as a “decisive day.” As the revolution enters its 3rd week, the protestors have turned the heat on government institutions. Yesterday, the protestors surrounded the parliament and the interior ministry. Today or tomorrow, the protestors may move the battle to new, but more fortified fronts.
A Glance at the Youth
In the Egyptian Revolution
Ibrahim Souri / New TV (Syria)
LEBANON (February 8, 2011) — Youth played a pioneering role in the Egyptian revolution that led people to take to the streets against the ruling regime. These young people, who committed to strenuous and sometimes dangerous work, led the Egyptian street to explode.
The common denominator among these young people is that they have all experienced the regime’s prison, with or without a reason. They were all pursued by Egyptian security forces and intelligence agencies, in addition to being subject to abuse by the Interior Ministry, led by Habib el-Adly. Ahmed Maher, born in 1980, is a civil engineer. Three years ago, he founded the April 6 Youth Movement.
This movement, alongside the online community “We’re all Khalid Saeed,” played an important role in organizing the March of Millions, which was unprecedented in Egypt’s recent history. Maher emerged as one of the most prominent organizers of the first general strike Egypt witnessed. For this reason, he was kidnapped once and arrested once. However, that did not stop him from organizing the June protest last year in solidarity with Khalid Saeed, a martyr of the emergency law.
Mahir, who is never without internet and modern information technology, recently told a newspaper: “After the revolution in Tunisia and the overthrow of Zine El Abidine, we became able to promote the idea of change in Egypt.” Isra’a Abdul Fatah, born in 1978, is a member of the El-Ghad Party and participated in the call for the April 6th strike. She was arrested by the authorities on the same day and taken to the Qasr al-Nil police station, where she was accused of inciting riots.
Guest, Female #1
It has been 30 years; how can we trust a regime that has betrayed us for 30 years? We need to try something else. Why should we give them another 6 months? When the president of the republic decided to replace the government, he assigned a new one from the same regime.When we ask that parliament be dissolved, how can the president come out and say that parliament will review the violations committed?
Nawar Ahmed Fouad Najim is a journalist and public affairs and human rights activist. She is the blogger behind “The Popular Tahyyes Front,” which was founded on the eve of the October war. She became an activist in 1995 by protesting Israel’s participation in an industrial exhibition in Egypt. This led to her first experience in prison, which initiated her anti-torture activism and made her politically conscious, rejecting the government’s domestic and foreign policies.
Guest, Female #2
We have had enough. We are going to continue until we hear the president saying he understands us. This is our ultimate demand.
Ahmed Douma also emerged from the April 6th Movement. One day, he wrote: “the dictator must go.” He was tortured in the regime’s prisons, interrogation rooms and the military court. This barbaric torture broke one of his arms. Douma, the spokesman for the April 6th movement, is 23-years-old. He is a University of Tanta student and an active blogger. Wael Ghonim also played a large part in the call for mobilization and self-expression. He was detained for 12 days. After his release, the youth of Tahrir Square chose him as their spokesman.
Among the youth and activists jailed and tortured in the January revolution are Diya’e el-Sawi, member of the Youth Union of the Egyptian Labor Party, Karim Rida, Mohammed Shaoqi, Ahmed Rifaat, Basim Fatahi, Ahmed al-Barmawi, Ilji Hamdi, Islam al-Badri, Mohammed Mahi and Abdul Rahman Ezz. Egyptian bloggers also played an important role in the people’s revolution by conveying their positions, propositions and calls on their websites. Wail Abbas is at the forefront of these bloggers.
A human rights activist, Wail won a journalism award from the International Center for Journalists and an award from Human Rights Watch. BBC chose him as one of the most influential people in 2006. In addition, there are many others who played important roles in the January revolution, including Khalid Saeed, who requires a separate story.
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