A year on, Egyptians back at Tahrir Square to mark uprising

Last Updated: Thursday, January 26, 2012 - 00:32

Cairo: Egyptians gathered here at the Tehrir
square to mark the completion of their revolution that begin a year ago leading to the ousted of President Hosni Mubarak`s
30-year-old regime.

They had gather on the anniversary eve to celebrate and
commemorate the revolution.

In an effort to preempt massive protests planned, the
Egyptian government and military ruler of the country, the
Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF) took several measures
including granting government jobs to all those got injured
during the protests.

Finalising the compensations to be paid to them, granting
them medals of honour and arranging for the Parliament to
convene for the first time on January 23, two days before the
anniversary.

Egyptian Parliament, on the second day of its functioning
also decided to form a fact-finding committee on the victims
of the revolution and sending a mission to Tahrir Square on
the anniversary to assure revolutionaries that revolution`s
goals would be achieved.

The Chief of the SCAF, Field Marshall Hussein Tantawi
announced the end of the state of emergency in a televised
speech late yesterday afternoon, few hours before the
anniversary.

Egypt has been in the state of emergency since 1981 when
Mubarak came to power.

Tantawi speech did not appease the activists, who said the rhetoric, tone, language and even set up of the speech was reminiscent of Mubarak`s speeches. Also the lifting of emergency was also not welcomed by them.
Human rights activist Hossam Bahgat said "Mubarak used to
say he will cancel the emergency law except in cases of
terrorism and narcotics. The speech by Tantawi today is no
different. Policemen can still stop anyone in the street
because they believe he is a thug."

For some, January 25 is a day of celebration while for
others it is a commemoration, as at least 846 people killed
and 6,000 injured during the revolution.

The SCAF insists the day is to celebrate the revolution.
The view was also shared by the Islamists, the Muslim
Brotherhood and the Salafis, who combined won a majority in
Parliament. They say they will take to the streets to protect
the squares.
For the revolutionaries, who are taking to the squares to
commemorate the people who lost their lives last year and who
were not avenged so far.

The silent majority or who have been named "the Party of
the Couch" is in fear the day may be chaotic or witness
violence tantamount to last years.

Many people may not leave their houses at all today. They
are also stocking up on food and cash money in fear the
country might come to a standstill like last year.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - 12:35

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