The following happened after I stopped blogging yesterday: Malek was released, we found out where Sharqawy was detained, there was a tiny protest at the Lawyer's syndicate in Cairo , and the city of Mahalla went on fire. Clashes erupted between the people and the police, shots were fired, over 100 detained and at least 2 are dead. Here is the story:
Egyptians angry with
the government about high prices set fire to shops and two
schools in a Nile Delta textile town on Sunday after police
thwarted plans for a general strike and countrywide protests.
Police fought battles through the streets of Mahalla
el-Kubra with the protesters, led by textile workers who tried
to go on strike for more pay to compensate for inflation.
The demonstrators set ablaze a primary school, a
preparatory school and a travel agency, among other shops in
the working-class town, and stopped an incoming train by
putting blazing tires on the railway tracks, witnesses said.
Police fired rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse the
protests. Some 40 people were injured and hundreds of others
had breathing problems from gas inhalation, security sources
Protesters threw stones at police, attacked police vehicles
and tore down the posters of the ruling party's candidates in
Tuesday's local elections, witnesses said.
Hossam has more
Sometime after 3pm, demonstrations broke out in El-Shoun Sq, chanting
against price increases.. Mubarak’s police fired on the demonstrators..
A man and a child were killed.. Police trucks attacked.. Buses caught
on fire… Mass round ups of activists and citizens… Ghazl el-Mahalla
labor organizers Kamal el-Fayoumi and Tarek Amin el-Senoussi are in police custody… Police gunshots heard throughout the town according to witness…
UPDATE: I’ve spoken with Kareem el-Beheiri,
who’s on the run now… Kareem says hundreds were detained today in
Mahalla including minors… Anyone nabbed was abused also by the police.
Children were beaten up with sticks, sacks full of rocks, punches,
kicks… Lawyers who showed up to defend the detainees were chased by
sword-wielding plainclothes police thugs… For more information about
the mass round ups of activists and demonstrators in Mahalla, Cairo,
Mansoura, Kafr el-Sheikh and elsewhere, please check out the Tadamon, April 6th Strike and the HMLC blogs, as well as Nora’s Twitter account…
UPDATE: Mahalla is under “unofficial” curfew,
according to an activist in the city I’ve just spoken with.. The town
is occupied entirely by Mubarak’s Central Security Forces who managed
to pacify the city by 10pm.. Citizens are instructed by microphones to
stay in their homes…
I could write all about it, but I got pictures, and you know what they say, worth a thousand words and all, so check it out:
This is how Mahalla looked like. Streets empty and shops closed!
And then the police arrived, which got the clashes started, and it looked like something out of Gaza:
As you can see, all ages participated in the rioting….
Tear Gas was used to disperse the protesters
A protester kicking away a canister of tear gas
The people started burning tires in the streets
Some even burned down a Bus…
Some people were arrested
And others heavily injured.
For more pictures go here and here , and for more coverage, go here .
There are talks of a repeat strike the first week of May, so this may be all far from over!