Egypt clashes continue for yet another day, despite Morsi declaring a state-of-emergency and preparing to arrest hundreds of citizens. Morsi continues to become more violent, more brutal and more repressive in his response to Egyptian citizens critical of his tyranny.
January 28, 2013
Police tear-gassed protesters in Cairo on Monday as clashes still gripped Egypt despite a declared state of emergency aimed at suppressing democracy in the region. The citizens on the street meanwhile reject president Morsi’s call for a dialogue as unrest enters its fifth day. They’ve done that before and know that Morsi is interested only in usurping more power from the people.
The violent unrest across Egypt rages on despite a 30-day state of emergency in Egypt starting Monday evening that President Morsi declared yesterday, as protesters pose a larger threat to Morsi’s power grab.
Morsi also set curfews from 9pm to 6am in the three most cities of Port Said, Suez and Ismailia where protesters are most loudly demanding democracy and transparency from the state. Further unrest is anticipated as many refuse to be repressed by the restrictions.
Many people believe a curfew will also be imposed on the capital, where police continue to brutally attack and fire teargas at protesters in Tahrir Square. A bystander was shot dead in clashes near the iconic venue, AFP reported Monday morning. Protesters are reporting that he was shot dead by government forces.
Thousands of people took to the streets of Port Said later on Monday to attend funerals of the most recent victims of police violence and repression. Reuters reported that mourners waved teargas canisters at television cameras to demonstrate that it is the brutal repressive police force who is to blame for the murder of Egyptian citizens.
As the violence continues leaving now some 50 people dead, Egypt’s main opposition group, the National Salvation Front, has rejected President Mohamed Morsi’s calls for senior politicians and groups to join a national dialogue, saying it “could only lead to a dead end.” Recent interactions with Morsi have shown that he has no interest in fostering democracy in the region.
Speaking after the emergency meeting Monday afternoon, leading member of the coalition, Mohamed ElBaradei, said the proposal by the Islamist leader was “cosmetic and not substantive.”
The National Salvation Front will only attend talks, ElBaradei stressed, if a list of conditions laid by the opposition is met.
Earlier, smaller opposition groups also rejected president Morsi’s offer to negotiate because “the dialogue is a waste of time if the president doesn’t take responsibility for the bloody events.” They will not allow Morsi to get away with unapologetic, violent murder against citizens fighting for democracy.
Shortly after the state of emergency was declared, some 200 people marched in the streets of Ismailia, Reuters reported citing witnesses. “Down with Morsi, down with the state of emergency,” they chanted.
There have been reports of male mobs groping and assaulting isolated women in Tahrir Square amid the unrest. Twenty-five cases of sexual assaults by officers and others trying to suppress female protesters have been reported over the last few days. Some have been stripped naked and one was raped, local women’s rights campaigners told The Guardian.
Egypt’s cabinet later approved a draft law to give the army the power to arrest civilians. A cabinet source told Reuters that the army would “behave like a police force,” meaning detainees would go to a civilian, rather than a military court.
However, Cairo-based journalist Bel Trew told RT that there “have already been calls for protests to break this curfew starting at 8pm [Monday night], they say, in defiance of the president.”
“Security forces are now able to arrest citizens and detain them for up to 30 days without charges. So we’re likely to see a wave of arrests across those three cities as people violate the curfew and clash with police,” she said.
Rallies have been taking place in Cairo, Alexandria, Suez and half a dozen other places as citizen outrage continues to spread like wildfire. Protesters have taken to the streets in greater numbers following Saturday’s death sentence verdicts over a stadium stampede last February.
On Sunday, thousands turned out for the funerals of 35 rioters who were killed in previous Port Said protests on Saturday. Teargas was fired and gunfire was shot into the funerals. In Cairo, there was so much teargas in the air that Cairo journalist Bel Trew was struggling to get her words out.