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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Egyptian revolutionary groups commemorated the victims of Mohamed Mahmoud clashes one day ahead of the anniversary

Mohamed Mahmoud Street blocked by security forces
(Image: Ahram Online)
Egyptian activists and representatives and members of revolutionary groups have gathered on Monday, 18 November, to commemorate the victims of Mohamed Mahmoud Street clashes.

Protesters have clashed with the police and security forces on Mohamed Mahmoud Street leading to the headquarters of Egypt’s Ministry of Interior on 19 November 2011, just a week ahead of the planned parliamentary elections. 47 people were killed and hundreds injured as a result of the deadly clashes, many people were injured critically as security forces have been shooting live ammunition and bird shots targeting the heads and eyes of the protesters. Egypt’s military, SCAF (Supreme Council of the Armed Forces) was in power that time, after Hosni Mubarak stepped down.

Muslim Brotherhood and Salafist groups and parties have denounced the protesters accusing them of disrupting the order and trying to create chaos on the eve of the election.

Clashes have also erupted during the last year’s commemoration of the deadly clashes, when Islamists were in power and Mohamed Morsy was Egypt’s President.

In 2013 Egypt’s revolutionary groups and activists took a decision to stage the marches in commemoration of the victims of Mohamed Mahmoud clashes on Monday, 18 November, one day ahead of the actual day of anniversary. The marches have been held on Monday in order to avoid possible clashes and mixing with other political forces.
Marches commemorating the victims of Mohamed
Mahmoud clashes

Muslim Brotherhood and Alliance for Support of Legitimacy backing Egypt’s ousted President Mohamed Morsy has also expressed its readiness to stage the demonstrations in order to commemorate the victims of the clashes and to demand the military to be responsible for it. In addition to that the groups of supporters of Egypt’s Armed Forces and of Abdel Fattah El-Sissi, head of Egypt’s military, have called for the marches to mark the second anniversary and to also support the military.

The situation in the country and in society remains tense and the calls of the military supporters and the Islamists for the demonstrations to be held on Tuesday, 19 November, caused worries inside the revolutionary camp and among the activists and provoked their negative reactions as both the Armed Forces represented by SCAF and also Muslim Brotherhood were responsible for the deadly clashes and bloodshed on 19 November 2011.

That’s why, in order to avoid the confrontation and possible clashes and in attempt not to mix either with military supporters or with the Muslim Brotherhood’s loyalists Egypt’s revolutionary groups and activists have gathered on Monday.

Several thousand people have participated in the Monday’s commemoration march which took place in Cairo downtown starting from Abdeen Square. Demonstrators have commemorated the victims of 2011 clashes and also of the clashes erupted next year, 2012. They also commemorated young Gaber Salah, known as Jika, who was killed during the 2012 clashes.

Demonstrators have been chanting against Muslim Brotherhood, Armed Forces and the remnants of Mubarak’s regime demanding the purge of the security and police forces and those responsible for the clashes to be held accountable.

Egypt’s government in its turn has issued an official statement one day earlier stating that the victims of Mohamed Mahnoud clashes will be included in the lists of the revolutionary “martyrs” and their families should get the compensation from the state.

Mohamed Mahmoud clshes in 2011
(Image: FJP website)
In addition to that the government announced the opening of the monument to January 25 Revolution 2011 and 30 June Revolution 2013 to be open in Tahrir Square. Egypt’s interim Prime Minister Hazem El-Beblawy has participated in the ceremony of the opening of the foundation of the monument.

Though several revolutionary groups have entered Tahrir Square on Monday in attempt to protests against the erecting of the monument unless the changes of the security apparatus won’t be implemented and the victims of the clashes and oppressions won’t receive retribution. The protesters have been chanting against Muslim Brotherhood, “Feloul” (remnants of Hosni Mubarak’s regime) and SCAF as well. They’ve also painted their slogans on the foundation of the future monument.

The marches and commemoration ceremony on Monday was peaceful, but the situation remains tense ahead of the 19 November anniversary marches planned by both Muslim Brotherhood’s and Armed Forces loyalists as many expect possible provocations and clashes on this day.