12 arrested for staging sit-in outside Egypt PM's residence

Ahram Online, Monday 21 Jan 2013

Egyptian security forces break up sit-in held by unemployed post-graduates outside PM Hisham Qandil's home, arrest 12

At least 12 holders of Masters Degrees and PHDs were arrested by Egyptian security forces on Monday afternoon in front of Prime Minister Hisham Qandil's residence where they were holding a sit-in to demand jobs.

"The protesters have been demanding jobs for over a year and a half," labour activist Wessam Lotfi told Ahram Online.

Lotfi added that, after Qandil had refused their demands, Central Security Forces were dispatched to Cairo's Dokki district to disperse the sit-in.

"Twelve have been arrested and transferred to Dokki's district prosecutor," added Lotfi.

The post-graduates had been holding their sit-in for almost a week to demand employment by the state-run Central Agency for Organisation and Administration.

Qandil has announced that 66 government institutions would soon be announcing vacancies for holders of Masters Degrees and PHDs.

Protester Doaa Saleh, however, told the Cairo-based Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression that this process would "open the door to nepotism within each institute."

According to official statistics agency CAPMAS, the total number of unemployed Egyptians stood at some 3.4 million in the second half of 2012.

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