“Leave before the Saidis come”

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A rather large man (pictured above) stopped me in Tahrir yesterday and started shouting, “Lave before the Sa’idis come!” His threats were directed at Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak who he said should leave office before the Sa’idi people from Upper Egypt (a largely rural area of southern Egypt) come and really mess him up. As he spoke a crowd gathered around us, most were smiling and welcoming the lone Sa’idi man to Cairo. His loud threats were enough to make me feel a bit worried. I keep wondering what must be going through the mind of the 82-year-old president as he sees much of his country out in the streets every day expressing their hatred for his regime and calling on him to pack up and go.

The uprising is definitely escalating and taking on new forms. Yesterday, many of the labor unions joined in the struggle. Journalists are still facing many difficulties, and even those with credentials have been denied from covering factories on strike, or different cities like Alexandria and Suez where protests are ongoing, like the ones in Cairo.

The below are some images from Tahrir Square yesterday:

Protesters walk past a poster of a man killed by state security forces during pro-democracy protests (matthew cassel)

Protesters read Arabic newspapers pasted on a wall at Tahrir Square (matthew cassel)

'Revolution Hospital' (matthew cassel)

He stopped me and said, 'Take my picture smoking a joint in Tahrir Square' (matthew cassel)

Egytpian Christians march through Tahrir Square (matthew cassel)

Tens of thousands remain at Tahrir throughout the night (matthew cassel)

“Day of Departure”

Hundreds of thousands again came out to the “Day of “Departure” protest at Cairo’s Tahrir (Liberation) Square to call for the ouster of the US-backed regime of Hosni Mubarak. At the day’s end, Mubarak had yet to depart. But with non-stop protests continuing not only in Cairo but across Egypt, the dictator’s real day of departure will come soon.

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A man holds a donkey with 'Mubarak' written on it in Arabic (matthew cassel)

A woman walks by an area near Tahrir where clashes have happened between pro-democracy protesters and Mubarark's thugs who have tried to invade the square (matthew cassel)

A couple of revolutionary soldiers take a lunch break. For the past few days, they have fought and thrown stones at Mubarak's thugs who tried to invade Tahrir Square. When asked why he was in the streets, one told me: because we're tired and we want to work, we want to eat, we want to live. (matthew cassel)

Tahrir at sunset (matthew cassel)

And this is a banner hanging from a building at Tahrir listing protesters’ demands, you can find them translated below (thanks Hicham):

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1) Bringing down the President
2) Dissolution of both houses of parliament
3) Immediate end to state of emergency
4) Formation of a transitional government of national unity
5) Elected parliament to undertake constitutional amendments to hold presidential elections
6) Immediate trials of those responsible for the murder of the revolution’s martyrs
7) Expedient trials of the corrupt and thieves of the country’s wealth

And this is a video (not shot by me) from tonight that shows protesters singing some of the chants from the past week. The chorus is, “All of us are one hand, and we have one demand: Leave! Leave! Leave!”

Thugs attack Tahrir

Thugs of the US government-backed Egyptian dictator tried to take over Tahrir Square today where anti-dictatorship protesters have been staging a sit-in and demonstrating for days.

Pro-Mubarak supporters at Tahrir Square (matthew cassel)

An anti-Mubarak protester at Tahrir Square today (matthew cassel)

An injured anti-government protester is carried away after being injured (matthew cassel)

Revolution, day and night

More than two million took to Tahrir Square yesterday to call for President Mubarak’s overthrow.

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Last night in a televised speech, US-backed Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak refused to give in to the demands of millions of Egyptians and step down. Outraged by the news, protesters again took to the streets and marched through downtown before arriving at Tahrir Square to meet up with the thousands who continue to protest through the night.

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