11 political movements stage Tahrir sit-in after mass rally

Several political movements on Friday began a sit-in in Tahrir Square that they said will last until protesters' demands are met.

One such demand is the expedited public trials of former officials and police officers implicated in the killing of protesters during the 25 January revolution.

Meanwhile, other political powers, including the Muslim Brotherhood, participated in Friday’s rally but not the sit-in. Islamic movements that took part began leaving Tahrir at 3 pm.

Among the movements that decided to remain in Tahrir are the April 6 Youth Movement, the National Association for Change (NAC), Youth for Justice and Freedom, the Free Front for Change, the 25 January Revolution Youth Coalition and the National Council.

Ahmed Draag, an NAC leader, said its members decided to stage a sit-in until a timeline for the achievement of the demands of the revolution has been put in place. The demands include faster trials for former officials, the replacement of Minister of Interior Mansour al-Essawy (whose previous career was in the police) with a civilian, and the dismissal of Attorney General Abdel Meguid Mahmoud.

Protesters also called for abolishing military trials of civilians and freely electing current university presidents and deans, whom they said were appointed by the Mubarak regime.

Karima al-Hefnawy, a leader from the Kefaya movement, said the 25 Janaury revolution has not yet achieved its demands since the roots of the former regime remain firm in the ground.

Some protesters warned the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) that they must not repeat the mistakes of former president Hosni Mubarak. Khaled Mohamed, a protester, said, "The SCAF is totally silent and is not showing any sign that it intends to respond to the demands of the people. It seems to be following in the footsteps of Mubarak by making delayed responses, fueling the anger of the people."

Reem Ahmed, another protester, said, “We will not allow anyone to hijack our revolution, in which hundreds of martyrs fell. Our sit-in will continue and we will win, just as we defeated the former regime at the height of its power.”

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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