Tahrir Square wakes up hoping to reinvigorate the revolution

Hundreds of youth congregated in Tahrir Square on Thursday night to prepare for yet another Friday protest on 8 July, dubbed the "Friday of Persistence".

Protesters erected a giant umbrella over most of the square, alluding to their hope that the revolution would extend throughout Cairo's hot summer. The youths have deemed the umbrella a "red line," indicating that thugs, unfriendly media and remnants of Presidet Hosni Mubarak's administration will be categorically restricted from accessing the square.

Many protesters began their sit-in early by spending Thursday night in the square. While setting up the umbrella, creating signs and painting walls, the youth sang the songs of revolutionary Sheikh Issa, prompting passers-by and protesters to comment on the festive mood.

"The square is back," said one.

On all sides of the square, chants had already started. "Anas al-Fiqqi is found innocent. Where else have you seen such audacity?" Fiqqi, the former minister of information, was recently acquitted of misusing public funds after being accused of spending public money on the former National Democratic Party's election campaign.

"We are not thugs, we are revolutionaries," was another chant, referring to accusations by government officials and others that feuds in the square are being fueled by the proliferation of paid thugs.

The youth also set up barricades at the entrances to the square.

According to Mohamed Nezar, a member of The National Front for Justice and Democracy, the main function of the protest is to demand the public prosecution of Mubarak and to secure justice and compensation for the families of the revolution's martyrs. Other demands include increasing the national minimum wage, ending military trials and restoring a harmonious relationship between the people and the police.

Nezar added that many of the preparations for Friday were funded by donations from the youth, as well as from figures such as Mamdouh Hamza, a renowned businessman.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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