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For a brief moment, #Egypt gave us something to be proud of, to idolize a more civilized and peaceful protest inspite of a violent opposition. Now… what a shame. They were so close.

Above: Egypt police beating protestors, including a veiled woman in the iconic “blue bra”

(Source: voicesofthearabspring)

Filed under egypt protest revolution revolt arab spring democracy love hate power money greed military police middle east syria yemen bahrain tunisia libya violence blue bra

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Yemeni President Saleh signs deal on ceding power


Mr Saleh signed the agreement, brokered by Yemen’s Gulf Arab neighbours, in the Saudi capital, Riyadh.

Under the plan, he will transfer his powers to his deputy ahead of an early election and in return will get immunity from prosecution.

But protesters rallying in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, said they would reject any deal giving the president immunity.

The demonstrators said the Gulf initiative ignored the “blood of martyrs”, BBC Arabic correspondent Abdullah Ghorab in Sanaa reports.

(via eddyizm-deactivated20131128)

Filed under Yemen Saleh Revolution Yemeni President President Saleh power protest

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Inside Egypt’s Tahrir Square: “I helped topple a dictator!”

By Nadia El-Awady

"I’m an Egyptian revolutionary! And I helped topple a dictator!"

That was the message I tweeted to the world soon after learning that Egyptian President Mohammed Hosni Mubarak had finally stepped down.

The rush of emotions I have felt since hearing the news has been almost crippling at times.

The Egyptian people had lived under a single dictatorial ruler for 30 years. It took less than three weeks for this regime to crumble.

[ For complete coverage of politics and policy, go to Yahoo! Politics ]

For 18 days, more than 300 had died at the hands of the police and thugs reportedly leashed by the regime itself. Thousands were injured. Hundreds camped out in Tahrir Square, a majority with not much more than a single blanket to protect themselves from the elements. And yet millions of others marched day after day, voicing their demands that Mubarak and his regime leave.

During those 18 days, I marched, ran from tear gas and live ammunition, and then I marched some more. I visited Tahrir Square almost every day. I took pictures, I shot film, and at times I joined the protesters myself.

For the most part, when they were not being attacked, the mood among protestors was almost like a party; Tahrir Square felt like a carnival. On every corner, people sang, danced, recited poetry, discussed politics and, of course, marched round and round and round and round calling for an end to the regime.

Many displayed the sense of humor for which Egyptians are known all over the Arab world. One man held up a sign that said: “Leave now. I really need a shower.” Others acted out comedic plays and sketches. A protester dressed up like a soccer referee and walked around the square blowing through his whistle and waving a red card that said “leave”.

Another group of protesters who had come to Cairo from Sharqiya, a region 50 miles north of the capital,  took off their shoes and used them to spell the word “leave”.  Showing the sole of your shoe has long been considered an insult in Arab culture.

On the night of Thursday, February 10, Mubarak made his third speech to the Egyptian public.  All day, rumors had filled the square that he would resign that night.  People from all over the capital left their homes and headed to Tahrir Square, in anticipation of a celebration. When he said instead that he would not step down until he had presided over a transition of power himself, almost every single man, woman and child who was in the square raised their shoes in indignation. Mubarak was not listening.

Many woke up Friday expecting the day to turn into a blood bath. Mubarak and Omar Suleiman, the long-time head of the Egyptian intelligence services who Mubarak had named as his vice president shortly after the demonstrations began, implied that they would not tolerate continued disruption in the country. Since the police had not yet appeared back on the streets, this left only the army to impose an end to the protests.

But the people had absolutely no intention of backing down.

Like so many others, I left my home Friday morning not knowing whether I’d live to return. I was equipped with nothing but my camera and a bandanna to protect myself from tear gas.

If any force was used against the protesters, they had  nothing to protect themselves with. We had already seen so many die at the hands of police and thugs . Nevertheless, protesters left their homes armed only with their determination and the will to make a better country for themselves.

(Read the rest of this article here: http://yhoo.it/hCbZEl)

Filed under Egypt Dictator Tahrir Square Freedom Mubarak Hosni Mubarak Revolution Tunisia Yemen Middle East Muslim Peaceful Protest