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Egypt's Way of the Revolution Front to protest student detentions Sunday

Leading revolutionary coalition to stage downtown protest Sunday in support of students detained amid campus unrest

Ahram Online, Saturday 14 Dec 2013
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Cairo University students, are seen shrouded in tear gas from Egyptian security forces during a clash in front of the main gate of the university, in Cairo December 10, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)
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Egypt's Way of the Revolution activism group announced it will stage a demonstration Sunday in downtown Cairo to demand the release of dozens of university students arrested in past weeks as defiant student protesters continue to demonstrate against the military and the police apparatus.

"We see the increase in students who were assaulted and arrested inside campus and even from their homes as a war on students, not a war on terrorism," said the statement released by the group Saturday, referring to the interim government's rhetoric in breaking up demonstrations violently.

The group also called on other political forces to join the Sunday demonstration scheduled for 4pm in Talaat Harb Square near to the iconic Tahrir Square.

Participating protesters will rally to demand the immediate release of detained students and the trial of officials responsible for the killing of two students during the recent crackdown on university protests. The group is also calling for an end to security force breaches of university campuses, and for an end to extraordinary disciplinary measures taken against politically active students.

Osama Ahmed, a Cairo University student member of the front, told Ahram Online that Sunday's protests call for the release of all detained students and to punish those responsible for violence against students.

Ahmed added that the front is currently coordinating with students in different universities to mobilise on campuses in order to press for their colleague's release. 

Student members of the front will hold a news conference Sunday in front of Cairo University to announce future activities to press for the students' release.

Last month, Cairo University accused security forces of firing tear gas and birdshot on campus during clashes with protesting students that led to the death of student Mohamed Reda and the injury of several others.

Another student was killed last month during an incursion of security forces on campus at Al-Azhar Islamic learning university.

Since the beginning of the academic year in September, Egyptian universities have been at the heart of the unrest gripping the country since the 3 July ouster of former president Morsi amid mass popular protests against his rule.

Pro-Morsi students have organised near-daily protests to call for the former president's reinstatement and to denounce the policies of the interim government.

The Way of the Revolution front, launched in September, aims to provide an alternative to the current "polarisation" between the military and the Muslim Brotherhood. The front includes leading members of the April 6 Youth Movement, Strong Egypt Party, the Revolutionary Socialists and the Justice and Freedom Youth.

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