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Divisions in Tahrir as Egyptians mark uprising
“You have the parliament, the marshal (Tantawi) is in power and the revolutionaries are in prison,” a man shouted at a Brotherhood supporter carrying the blue flag of the group’s political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party.
The Brotherhood has largely stayed out of anti-military protests in recent months and focused on the election campaign. The new, 508-seat parliament held its inaugural session on Monday, with a Brotherhood leader sworn in as speaker. Liberals and independents garnered under 10 percent of the seats.
But the liberal and leftist groups maintain that the revolution must continue until remnants of Mubarak’s 29-year regime are removed from public life and government, and until those responsible for the killing of protesters are brought to justice. Mubarak himself is on trial, along with his former security chief and several other security officers, on charges of killing protesters. Mubarak and his two sons are also on trial for corruption.
“I am not here to celebrate. I am here for a second revolution,” said Attiya Mohammed Attiya, a 35-year-old father of four children who is unemployed. “The military council is made of remnants of the Mubarak regime. We will only succeed when we remove them from power.”
“We are the political force that paid the heaviest price,” said Alaa Mohammed, a teacher and Brotherhood supporter. “Thanks to the military council, we had the cleanest elections ever, and the military protected the revolution.”
The ruling generals have declared Jan. 25 a national holiday to mark the occasion. Previously, Jan. 25 was Police Day, an occasion selected by pro-reform groups to launch their uprising a year ago, in part to protest decades of institutional torture and abuse by the hated police force. Also to mark the occasion, Tantawi partially lifted decades-old emergency laws that gave police far reaching powers. He also decreed the release of hundreds of civilians convicted and sentenced to jail terms by military tribunals.
By Brahma Chellaney
Beijing's creeping aggression signals a challenge to U.S. presence in the Asian Pacific
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