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Thursday, 17 June 2021

Egypt's second day of anger starts early

Thousands gather in Tahrir Square from the early hours to call for the revolution's demands

Mohamed El Hebieshy, Friday 27 May 2011
Tahrir Square
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At 8am the weather was already hot in Tahrir Square. A few thousand were already in the square and there were popular committees all around the square and check points on every entrance with a lane for women and another one for men. The spirit of those on the check points reminded me of the sit-in that started in Tahrir on 28 January.

Yesterday the army announced that its forces will not be present anywhere near the demonstration and it seems that they are keeping their word. This is maybe why some of the protesters who came to square early today feel a bit cautious. The April 6 Youth Movement said yesterday that the "youth of the generation are capable of protecting the square" and that they will organise popular committees to work on preventing any tensions from escalating. They were not the only ones doing so in the early hours of the day.

When we arrived to the square there were already two stages assembled while another two were being built. The Idea of having many stages and platforms were not a good one for many protesters. "One stage, One Hand," they chanted, yet the work continued and small circles were formed where people were discussing the demands that already started to appear on some banners in the square. Some were calling for dismissing Deputy Prime Minister Yehia El-Gamal, others were criticising the transition plan and calling for the elections first. Criticism of the Supreme Council for Armed Forces was present as well.   

Last night messages were already circulating on Twitter, Facebook and mobile phones with tips for the day. "To face the hot weather: drink a lot of fluids, put on sun block, stand in the shade if you feel tired, wear sunglasses," said one message. "Put a pack of rehydration solution in your pocket and drink it if you feel that you will be getting sun stroke," read another message. The phone numbers of the lawyers of the Egyptian Front for Defending the Egyptian Revolution were also circulated.

It is not clear yet how the day may end with people calling for a sit-in until all the demands are met and others saying that the day should end at 6pm.

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