Egyptian riot police clash with anti-war protesters
Egyptian anti-war protesters clashed with riot police Thursday, hurling stones and metal barricades, pounding on cars and shouting against the United States and their own leaders.
Egyptian riot police used water cannons to keep some 1,000 stone-throwing demonstrators, mainly students from the American University in Cairo, from reaching the U.S. Embassy.
The protesters started throwing metal barricades when riot squads tried to block them from joining about 500 Muslim Brotherhood and communist anti-war demonstrators about 50 meters away in downtown Cairo's Tahrir Square. Police took swings at demonstrators' heads with batons.
Soon, the demonstrators had broken through. At the merged rally, which quickly grew to more than 2,000 surrounded by riot police, protesters held a banner reading "Shame on U.S.A." and chanted, "the people of Basra are our brothers; they are poor people like us."
They also shouted "Down with Arab leaders!" and "Leave, leave Mubarak!" in reference to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.
At Thursday's protest, about 150 young people again broke through police lines to block traffic near the Egyptian Museum, pounding on cars and demanding revolution. They shouted: "Why, why, why, police? Are we in prison or what?" and "The price of freedom is blood!"
Police initially gave chase, but ultimately turned their attention back to the main group. Demonstrators eventually scattered, charging through downtown streets.
In the Nile Delta town on Zaqaziq, about 12,000 students demonstrated against the war on Iraq inside the university campus protesting the war on Iraq. Others protested in the universities of Ein Shams and al-Azhar in Cairo and thousands turned out in Alexandria and the delta town of Kafr el-Sheikh. (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)