Egypt Independent

Police presence returns to Tahrir

Police forces returned on Wednesday to Cairo's Tahrir Square for the first time in 40 days.

On Friday, 28 January, police forces made a controversial retreat following bloody encounters with pro-democracy protesters at the square who were demanding the resignation of former president Hosni Mubarak.

A number of police officers, as well as plainclothes, armed security agents appeared in the area Wednesday, hours after interim Prime Minister Essam Sharaf announced his decision to speed up the full return of police forces.

Adel al-Megeiry, Cairo's assistant security chief, told Al-Masry Al-Youm that police are "turning a new page with citizens, saying that the demands of youth will be handled based on mutual respect." He added that police forces redeployed to the streets to enforce the law in coordination with the military.

"We hope citizens will respect our mission, and we vow to respect their rights. We will by committed  to the directives given by the cabinet and the Ministry of Interior," he said.

Former Interior Minister Habib al-Adly, along with other former officials, is facing charges of murdering protesters and ordering the withdrawal of police forces to create chaos.

The military on Wednesday dispersed the sit-in in Tahrir Square and removed tents erected by the protesters.

A large demonstration is anticipated Friday to support of Muslim-Christian unity following recent sectarian clashes and press for the dissolution of the notorious State Security.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.