Islamist forces absent from Sayed Bilal vigil

Islamist forces absent from Sayed Bilal vigil

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Mon, 07/01/2013 - 21:53

Islamist forces did not attend Monday evening's vigil commemorating the death of Sayed Bilal, a victim of police torture.

Bilal, a Salafist, was arrested following the New Year's Day attack on the Two Saints Church in Alexandria in 2011, which left at least 23 dead. He died while in detention.

The vigil was attended by about 20 protesters, including two Salafis and a number of opposition activists, who held up banners against the Muslim Brotherhood and the new Constitution.

Some wore shirts with Bilal's face printed on them, as well as shirts bearing the faces of other martyrs, including Husseini Abou Deif and Jika, both of whom were killed at the end of 2012 under the rule of Islamist President Mohamed Morsy. Some activists put tape over their mouths.

Salafi activist Mahmoud Sayed criticized Islamist forces for not attending the vigil, telling Al-Masry Al-Youm that Bial's death was as much a catalyst for the 25 January revolution as  martyr Khaled Saeed's death was.

Thye vigil began on Mohamed Mahmoud Street, where some activists painted a portrait of Bilal alongside grafitti commemorating other martyrs of the revolution.

Last month, the Alexandria Criminal Court acquitted police officer Mahmoud Abdel Alim of killing Bilal.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm