Top News: Violence flares on anniversary of Egypt uprising

Jan 25 Anniversary DNE.jpg

Follow live updates from January 25 anniversary protests in Tahrir Square on Ahram Online, Daily News Egypt and The Guardian.


Morsi: Elections to take place sometime in three, four months
Elections for the House of Representatives should take place within three to four months, President Mohamed Morsi announced at a meeting with book publishers on Wednesday. Morsi met with publishers from Egypt and the Arab world after the opening of the 44th Cairo International Book Fair, and told those present that new legislation is needed to guarantee greater freedoms for the sector. "It should be a priority of the coming House of Representatives to pass laws that allow for freedom of publication and creativity,” he said. [Egypt Independent, 1/24/2013]

PM Qandil urges political powers to keep demonstrations peaceful
Prime Minister Hisham Qandil on Friday called on political powers and parties to assume their national duties and explicitly condemn riots and vandalism, urging them to keep demonstrations peaceful. In a statement on his Facebook page, the prime minister said he discussed the security situation with Interior Minister Major General Mohamed Ibrahim. Qandil is also reported to have said that his government has failed to fully achieve the aspirations of the Egyptian people, adding that the government was faced with a difficult task, due to the legacy left by the former regime after thirty years of dictatorship.  [Aswat Masriya, El Watan (Arabic), 1/25/2013]

Brotherhood issues high security alert for the 25th
The Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau issued strict orders to its administrative offices and the Freedom and Justice Party’s secretariats to adopt the necessary security measures to protect Brotherhood headquarters on 25 January. MB members should be prepared for attacks from opposition parties, but should exercise restraint, the bureau cautioned. [Egypt Independent, 1/24/2013]

Morsi says ‘counter-revolution’ is obstructing Egypt’s development
Egypt president Mohamed Morsi has on Thursday taken a swipe at what he described as remnants of the Hosni Mubarak regime for trying to plunge the country into deep troubles as it struggles to recover from economic woes. Morsi gave a speech at the Azhar Conference Hall in Cairo in celebration of the Mulid al-Nabi (birth of Prophet Muhammad), during which he said “counter-revolution” forces are attempting to “undermine the [Egyptian] state.” [Ahram Online, 1/24/2013]


Egypt’s PM meets Lagarde in Davos on IMF $4.8 billion loan
Egypt’s premier, Hisham Qandil, has met with the chief of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Christine Lagarde, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos to continue talks over a $4.8 billion loan, state-run Arabic-language news website al-Ahram reported Thursday. Lagarde has welcomed supporting Egypt through the IMF, confirming that the fund’s delegation will arrive Cairo soon, Alaa al-Hadidi, the Egyptian Cabinet’s spokesperson, told al-Ahram. [Ahram Online, 1/24/2013]

Also of Interest:
On Revolt’s Anniversary, Egypt Needs Economic Miracle | Bloomberg


Army deploys tanks to help bolster security
The Armed Forces have been deployed in Cairo, Giza, Suez, Ismailia and Port Said, as per the request of the Interior Ministry. Speaking under condition of anonymity, military sources told al-Masry al-Youm that the army sent armored vehicles and tanks to secure vital governorates and main roads against violent actions. Army vehicles are currently stationed on the Cairo-Assiut Western Desert Road and major roads leading to Sinai, Aswan and Marsa Matrouh, the sources said. The Armed Forces would not interfere in any protests commemorating the anniversary of the revolution, the sources insisted. [Egypt Independent, 1/25/2013]

Interior Ministry declares high alert on revolution anniversary
The Interior Ministry issued a high security alert ahead of protests on Friday that commemorate the second anniversary of the 25 January revolution, coinciding with the scheduled declaration of the verdict in the Port Said Stadium massacre trial on Saturday 26 January. Police officers will be deployed to secure public facilities, police stations, embassies and government headquarters around the country. The Interior Ministry deployed more than 50 Central Security Forces vehicles and 12 armored vehicles around the Interior Ministry, Cabinet headquarters, the Shura Council and the House of Representatives.  [Egypt Independent, 1/24/2013]

CSF recruits accuse officers of brutality
Central Security Forces (CSF) recruits have accused officers at the Gabil military base al-Tur in southern Sinai of beating new recruits. A young recruit named Mohammad Ramadan said: “Officers beat us and kicked us.” He went on to say that was a response to the recruits’ protest over maltreatment and rough conditions experienced at the hands of one of the camp’s junior officers. [DNE, 1/24/2013]

Also of Interest:
Stolen Egyptian artefacts seized on Cairo-Suez highway | Ahram Online


Violence flares on anniversary of Egypt uprising
Despite calls for peaceful protest on the January 25 Revolution anniversary, violence has punctuated the demonstrations throughout the day. Minor clashes broke out on Friday morning between protesters and security forces in downtown Cairo at the intersection of Sheikh Rihan Street and Qasr al-Aini Street, state-run MENA news agency reported. Protesters hurled stones at security forces behind concrete wall at Sheikh Rihan Street. Some other protesters tried to intervene to stop the clashes. Protests also transformed into violent confrontations in Alexandria by Friday afternoon, with eyewitness reports of rubber bullets and tear gas used to disperse protesters, and at least one death reported and 45 injuries. Clashes were also reported in Suez, where protesters attempted to storm a government building. The US embassy has warned its citizens to avoid downtown areas of Cairo and Heliopolis as well as Alexandria on the January 25 Revolution’s anniversary. Clashes began as early as January 24, with the Institut d’Egypte set on fire Thursday evening on Qasr al-Aini Street, and riot police setting fire to protester tents in Tahrir. Reports of attacks on Muslim Brotherhood buildings in Kafr El Sheikh and Cairo have also emerged.[Egypt Independent, Ahram Online (Video), DNE, Reuters, 1/25/2013]

‘Black Bloc’ stops tramway in Alexandria, protests in Cairo
A group of young protesters, who identified themselves as the "Black Bloc", have marked the second anniversary of the Egyptian revolution by blocking the tramway tracks in Alexandria on Friday. About ten people wearing black masks stopped the tramway track using traffic barriers, and have also blocked the road at al-Qaed Ibrahim Square where protests are expected to take place.   This is not the first appearance of the group as they also protested in Cairo on Thursday. They marched from Talaat Harb Square to Tahrir in central Cairo, banging drums and saying that they will "continue the revolution" and will “defend protesters in Tahrir”.
[Ahram Online, 1/25/2013]

Amnesty International calls on Egypt to tackle legacy of abuse
Egypt must investigate –  independently and effectively – the deaths of hundreds of protesters in demonstrations seen since the revolution in 2011, according to a Thursday press release issued by Amnesty International (AI). Hosni Mubarak’s 30 years of repressive rule took the track of silencing victims of violations by members of the security forces, a legacy the country seems to potentially live back up to if justice is not achieved for the slain protesters, stated the AI Thursday press release. In a briefing entitled "Rampant impunity: Still no justice for protesters killed in the 25 January revolution," AI mentions flaws in the evidence-gathering process related to achieving justice for these individuals. [Ahram Online, 1/24/2013]

Also of Interest:
Women’s march arrives at presidential palace | Egypt Independent, DNE
On Egypt uprising’s 2nd anniversary, revolutionary aspirations remain elusive | Ahram Online
Egypt Revolution’s 2nd anniversary: Rallies, marches and street-cleaning drives | Ahram Online


Germany says hurtful comments damage Middle East peace
The German government condemned on Friday any comments that might damage the goal of Middle East peace as "unhelpful", when asked about remarks on Jews that Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi is reported to have made in 2010 when he was a Muslim Brotherhood leader. "I will not comment on the remarks that have been attributed to Mr. Morsi," a spokesman for the German foreign ministry told a news conference ahead of a visit by President Morsi to Germany next week. "But for the German government it is clear that reducing tensions and working towards a long-term solution is the top priority in the Middle East. This applies not only to Egypt, but also to Egypt. Aggressive or hurtful comments from any side are unhelpful." [Ahram Online/Reuters, 1/25/2013]

Photo: DNE

Image: Jan%2025%20Anniversary%20DNE.jpg