Egyptians Rally Against Slow Government Reforms

Posted July 8th, 2011 at 5:45 am (UTC-5)
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Several thousand Egyptians have gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square to protest what they say is a slow pace of government reforms and justice for the victims of a crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations earlier this year.

Protesters pitched tents Friday in the middle of the square, the epicenter of the protests that toppled former Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak in February. More people are expected to join the chanting demonstrators after Friday prayers.

The rally follows 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 after a judge upheld the release on bail of seven police officers charged with killing demonstrators during the uprising that ousted Mr. Mubarak.

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.