Egypt Update: Renewed Crowds, Sit-in at Parliament Begins
For the third time since the popular uprising in Egypt has begun, crowds completely filled Tahrir Square on Tuesday, as protesters found renewed energy and they resolved not to leave until President Hosni Mubarak steps down. One protester characterized what has transpired so far as half a revolution, and vowed to complete it:
Ayman Farag, a Cairo lawyer, said the protesters’ work was far from complete. “What has happened so far is only half a revolution and I hope it will continue to the end,” he said.
It also appears that many first-time protesters who came out to the square today did so in response to the release of Wael Ghonim:
Ghonim has for now at least been thrust to the forefront of a protest movement that has yet to produce a leader. Activists say Ghonim was behind a Facebook group that helped to inspire the wave of protests. His interview also appears to have persuaded many Egyptians to side with the demonstrations.
“Ghonim’s tears have moved millions and turned around the views of those who supported (Mubarak) staying,” website Masrawy.com wrote two hours after the interview. In that short span, 70,000 people signed up to Facebook pages supporting him.
In addition to the huge crowd on the square, a sit-in has now started at the Parliament Building, as well. Here is a YouTube posted by Al Jazeera English: