Revolutionary Youth Coalition suspends Friday demonstrations for a week

Salma Shukrallah, Wednesday 13 Apr 2011

The court's decision to bring Mubarak and his family to trial and the release of several political prisoners has appeased the Coalition for this week, yet further protests are planned as more demands need to be met

Tahrir Square
Egyptians dance and wave national flags in Tahrir Square in Cairo (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt’s Revolutionary Youth Coalition declared at a conference on Wednesday that it will suspend its participation in the Friday demonstrations, which were due to take place this week, after the news of the Mubarak family trial became known.

The decision to suspend demonstrations came in consideration to the fact that “many of the demands have been met in the past 15 days,” according to the Coalition, including the trial of several ex-regime figures and the release of several political prisoners.

However, Coalition members added that they are calling for a demonstration, on Friday 22 April, requesting several more demands to be heard.

Abdel-Rahman Fares, a Coalition member, said that demands for next Friday include a declaration of the results of the investigations regarding the Saturday Tahrir violence, in which several protesters were reported dead and more injured as the army evacuated Tahrir Square, and those dealing with the evacuation of the Faculty of Mass Communication at Cairo University.

Other demands include the release of all political prisoners, an end to military trials of civilians and all non-civil forms of trials, the dissolution of all local council, the dissolution of the former ruling National Democratic Party, the removal of all governors and heads of universities and the choosing of a figure other than Mustafa El-Fiqi, whom they described as a representative of the old regime, for Egypt to nominate for the Arab League position.

With regards to the decision to suspend dialogue with the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, a suspension declared following the violent evacuation of Tahrir on Saturday, Shady El-Ghazali Harb said that although the suspension remains, it shall be reconsidered in light of the decision to start the Mubarak trials and will depend on the political developments within the coming week.

As for the political prisoners, the Coalition confirmed that the number of prisoners are all kept track of. Coalition representatives are planning to pay them visits in order to check on their condition and pressure campaigns for their release are planned.

The Revolutionary Youth Coalition had declared in a previous statement on 10 April that there would be a demonstration on Friday 15 April and called for an open ended sit-in in case the Mubarak family had not yet been called to trial. The Coalition’s decision to suspend the Friday demonstrations came within hours of the court calling the ousted president’s family to trial and ordering the detention of him and both of his sons for 15 days.     


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