Thursday, May 18, 2006


Police Beat Protesters

New day, same story. The government has given up all pretense of reform. Thursday saw not one, but two large protests. Reports indicate at the one in downtown Cairo was broken up by armed security forces. As with other protests, the security forces were aided in their effort by plainclothes civilians who can be described as well, "thugs." The photo left is of security officers attacking a photo reporter at the event.



The protests in Cairo came as two hearings -- one on the judges the other on Ayman Nour's appeals were being held. According to news reports, one judge, Hesham Bastawisi was reprimanded and facings being dismissed. The second judge was acquitted. Nour's appeal was rejected. None of this was a surprise.

At the same time, the Muslim Brothers, who participated in the downtown protest along with Kifaya and other opposition groups, had their own protest as well in an area called Abasaya. There were no press reports there, but activists are saying the beatings and arrests were even more fierce there because of the lack of press attention.

Here's what the media is saying:

The Washington Post
ran the AP story focusing on the beatings and Nour's declining health

The BBC led with Bastawisi's reprimand.

The New York Times focused on the beatings.

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