In a few days – on November 20, we will witness the second anniversary of the Mohamed Mahmoud Street deadly clashes, which was a link in the chain of repression, oppression, restriction of the people’s freedoms and the violation of Egyptians’ dignity. In those violent clashes, security forces killed dozens of protesters showing solidarity with the January 25 Revolution and rejection of the then ruling Military Council (SCAF) which broke its pledges and tried to impose its own vision and interests on the will of the Egyptian people.
The free Egyptians’ revolt in Mohamed Mahmoud Street overcame SCAF’s illusions of autocracy and power monopoly, forcing it instead to draw a timed roadmap for the hand-over of power to elected civilian institutions, despite murderous attacks against field hospitals, and security forces targeting the eyes of protesters, as well as inhuman handling of the bodies of martyrs in Tahrir Square. These are scenes that will forever remain in the minds of Egyptians, a black spot of security repression in the history of the junta’s many abuses and violations.
As we approach that second anniversary, Egypt lives a brutally similar climate, with the military coup that overturned the will of the people and trampled the choices they made, relying on maximum force and dragging the army into political life, ousting the first elected civilian president in Egypt’s history, suspending the constitution approved by Egyptians, disbanding the Shura Council (Upper House), which represented Egyptians, installing an interim president, a transitional government and an appointed panel to amend the constitution, and announcing a roadmap – amid many actions taken in isolation from the will and choices of the people.
As vengeful as in the Mohamed Mahmoud massacres, security forces under the military junta committed the worst massacres in the history of modern Egypt, killing thousands since the announcement of the coup on July 3, including the savage massacres in the violent dispersal of Rabaa and Nahda squares peaceful sit-ins.
Until today, the blood of martyrs flows, and thousands of detainees and wounded witness the brutal repression, as mouths are gagged, pens crushed, opinions restricted and the notorious ‘Visitors of Dawn’ reinstated, curfews re-imposed, Emergency Law brought back, schools and universities raided daily, female students arrested and assaulted.
Now a hand signal – a tribute to the blood of the Rabaa and other massacres’ martyrs – is regarded by the putschists as a greater security threat than Israeli enemy planes penetrating our homeland’s airspace to kill Egyptians within Egyptian borders. Now, anyone who raises his hand with that sign of defiance is a ‘legitimate’ target, utterly defenseless.
Meanwhile, implausible trumped up charges are leveled at honorable and innocent citizens, the elected President is put on trial on no real charge, at a time when the masters of the old regime are exonerated and their head acquitted, although they certainly caused the destruction and humiliation of Egypt and its people for over 30 years.
But the legendary steadfastness of the determined Egyptian people for over 4 months of peaceful mass protests blocks any attempts by this murderous military coup to extend its roots into the good soil of free and dignified Egypt.
While we welcome this anniversary, we solemnly salute the souls of all martyrs of the Revolution since January 25, 2011 and until now, as we renew our pledge to achieve their dream of a free homeland and honorable people, living in dignity and justice.
Therefore, the Anti-Coup Pro-Legitimacy National Alliance announces its participation in marking that day, and calls on the masses of Egyptians, young and old, men and women, to positively participate in events that commemorate the pure blood of Egyptians spilt in all liberty squares across Egypt, and that will be held on Monday, November 18, under the name "One Demand" in honor of Sheikh Hazem Abu-Ismail, who made on the same day that same demand, urging the Egyptian army to go "Back to Barracks", on the day the coup put him on trial.
Let this week be "Week of the Martyr".
The Alliance further calls on all free revolutionaries to mass near the homes of martyrs and in all public squares, raising those martyrs’ pictures.
With regard to revolutionary youth who wanted to mark that day near Mohamed Mahmoud Street or Tahrir Square, we affirm that we will not go there, because although Mohamed Mahmoud Street is a symbol of defiance, we call on free revolutionaries to stay away from potential trouble spots, so as not to give a chance to the conspirators to fabricate violent incidents and blame them on the National Alliance.
Let us always remember the blood of the martyrs, inspiring and motivating us to complete the march until Egypt regains its well-deserved place among the nations of the world.
God bless the martyrs and protect Egypt from all harm
The Anti-Coup Pro-Legitimacy National Alliance
Cairo: November 17, 2013