I understand that the Egyptian army is actually following a number of strategies to either minimize or defeat the victory of the people, according to a freelance reporter in Egypt shown on a CBC newscast this morning. She said the new coalition of interim governing officials had been recruited from the former ruling party, the NPD. The army was asking people to forgive and forget and not prosecute former officials. And she went on to list other army moves that seemed aimed at defusing the protest. So that is some of the background to today’s demonstrations. I have been unable to find the video interview.
Egyptians stage Tahrir Square victory march
Last Updated: Friday, February 18, 2011 CBC News http://www.cbc.ca/world/story/2011/02/18/egypt-march.html
Egyptian pro-democracy leaders held a victory march on Friday to celebrate the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak’s nearly 30-year rule one week ago.
The atmosphere was festive, as organizers hoped it would be, maintaining the upbeat spirit of the earlier protests. Some vendors in the square were selling vuvuzelas, the buzzing horns that became popular at last summer’s World Cup in South Africa.
Organizers said they wanted to keep people focused on the new regime amid concerns that the military rulers won’t follow through on promised democratic reforms. Demonstrators said the revolution is still a work in progress.
“Several people told me that Mubarak leaving was only just the beginning, that they would keep up the pressure to ensure that the more than 300 people who lost their lives in the revolution did not die in vain,” CBC’s Nahlah Ayed reported from Cairo.
In one area of the square, a monument was erected to those killed in the 18-day uprising. The country’s Health Ministry has said at least 365 civilians died.
Influential Egyptian cleric Sheik Youssef el-Qaradawi led the crowd in prayers, hailing the uprising and saying “the illegitimate can never defeat the truth.”
“I congratulate the youth,” he said. “They knew that the revolution will win in the end.”
“The revolution is not over, until we have a new Egypt,” he added.
A small number of loyalists of Mubarak held their own march in a Cairo suburb. Supporters of the ousted president set up a Facebook page calling for a competing “rally in gratitude for President Hosni Mubarak.”
Egypt’s pro-democracy movement has spread to Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, Jordan and Iran, all of which have seen security forces or government supporters use force to try to disperse protesters.
Four pro-reform protesters were killed and more than 200 were injured by Bahrain’s riot police on Thursday. Three of them were buried on Friday and several thousands of people came to honour them in Sitra, south of the capital, Manama.