After Student's Killing, Egypt Braces for New Protests Against Government

Crunch Anti-Morsi Demonstrations Set for Sunday

getty images

By Reuters

Published June 29, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

Egyptians and their security forces prepared for demonstrations on Sunday that may determine their future, two years after people power toppled a dictator and ushered in a democracy crippled by bitter divisions.

Waving national flags, thousands gathered on Cairo’s Tahrir Square, cradle of the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak. They hope that, after the working day, millions will rally across the country to unseat President Mohamed Mursi - exactly a year since the Islamist became Egypt’s first freely elected leader.

Across a capital eerily quiet for the start of the working week, Mursi supporters have also congregated - by a mosque not far from the suburban presidential palace. Liberal protest organisers plan to mount a sit-in outside from Sunday evening.

There was none of the street violence seen in the past week. Cairo’s security chief said over 140 known troublemakers had been rounded up in the past day. Some were found with weapons.

Interviewed by a British newspaper, Mursi repeated his determination to ride out what he sees as an undemocratic attack on his electoral legitimacy. But he also offered to revise the new, Islamist-inspired constitution, saying clauses on religious authority, which fueled liberal resentment, were not his choice.

He made a similar offer last week, after the head of the army issued a strong call for politicians to compromise. But the opposition dismissed it as too little to late. They hope Mursi will resign in the face of large numbers on the streets. Some also seem to believe the army might force the president’s hand.

An economic crisis, deepened by political paralysis, has encouraged some to take to the streets in protest. But many others fear renewed unrest will only make matters worse.

Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood can hope protests fizzle out like previous outbursts. If they do not, some form of compromise, possibly arbitrated by the army, may be on the cards.

VIOLENCE

Both sides insist they plan no violence but accuse the other - and agents provocateurs from the old regime - of planning more of the street fighting that has killed several people, including an American student, and wounded hundreds over the past week.

Helicopter gunships flew over Cairo. The U.S.-equipped army, though showing little sign of wanting power, warns it may step in if deadlocked politicians let violence slip out of control.

U.S. President Barack Obama called for dialogue and warned trouble in the biggest Arab nation could unsettle an already turbulent Middle East. Washington has evacuated non-essential personnel and reinforced security at its diplomatic missions.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • Vered Guttman doesn't usually get nervous about cooking for 20 people, even for Passover. But last night was a bit different. She was cooking for the Obamas at the White House Seder.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.