Demonstrators Rally Across Egypt For Faster Reforms

Posted July 8th, 2011 at 8:35 am (UTC-5)
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Thousands of Egyptians have taken to the streets to protest what they say is a slow pace of government reforms and justice for victims of this year's pro-democracy crackdown.

A huge crowd filled Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday, where some protesters have pitched tents. Others waved signs and Egyptian flags.

Smaller demonstrations are getting underway in cities that include Alexandria and Suez.

The rallies follow several legal decisions that have angered some Egyptians. They say trials of former officials are not transparent enough and are not moving fast enough.

Earlier this week, hundreds of protesters in Suez attacked a courthouse and police station. They were angered by a judge's decision to uphold the release on bail of seven police officers charged with killing demonstrators during the uprising that led to former President Hosni Mubarak's resignation in February.

On Tuesday, a Cairo court acquitted three of Mr. Mubarak's former Cabinet ministers of corruption charges.

Wednesday, in an apparent bid to stem mounting protests, Egypt's security chief announced plans to dismiss hundreds of police officers linked to the deadly crackdown.

Last week, more than 1,000 people were injured in clashes between police and protesters in Cairo. The demonstrators were urging the country's military leaders to speed up the prosecution of officials blamed for killing protesters in the lead-up to Mr. Mubarak's departure from office.

At least 850 people were killed during the 18-day revolt that culminated with Mr. Mubarak's resignation.