Egyptian Embassy in London Occupied in Solidarity with Tahrir Protests
Four female activists entered and occupied the Egyptian Embassy in solidarity with the Tahrir Square movement. The activists were subsequently arrested and taken to West End Central Police Station. London, UK. 5th December 2011 Egyptian Embassy in London Occupied in Solidarity with Tahrir Protests
At 9.00am this morning a number of women activists entered the Egyptian Embassy in London with a banner reading "Solidarity with Tahrir" in English and Arabic. Tahrir is both the square which has been the focal point of protests in Cairo, and Arabic for "Liberation". They are currently occupying part of the embassy.
Over the past month, protesters in Tahrir Square have been violently attacked by the army whilst protesting continuing military rule of Egypt, despite January's popular uprising which ousted Dictator Hosni Mubarak on February 11th.
The army has been firing on protesters with live ammunition and three types of tear gas, two of which are said to have caused fatalities. At least 42 people have been killed and over 3000 injured since protesters re-occupied Tahrir square on Nov 19th. Thousands of people remain in prison without charge since the beginning of the uprising and reports of torture are widespread.
Since the Military took over street patrols from the Police on January 28th 2011, 12,000 civilians have been arrested and tried under military courts - more than the total number tried by the military in 30 years of Mubarak's rule.
A state of emergency remains in place since 1981, outlawing strikes and protests. Despite this, Egyptians continue to protest, organise and take industrial action.
The protesters in London say they are responding to a call from protesters in Cairo to occupy Egyptian Embassies worldwide.
One protester, 31 year old medic Janet Cole, said:
"The peoples' uprising in January overthrew Mubarak, but the army have retained control - the people say there will never be real democracy while the army rules the country. We're protesting in solidarity with everyone defending their revolution in Egypt".
A second activist from the group added:
"The SCAF - the Supreme Council of Armed Forces - must stop attacking protesters and end military trials for civilians. The British government must also end its' tacit approval of the Junta, through its support for arms deals and silence on the ongoing repression".