Small Cairo rally calls for secular Egypt

Aug. 13, 2011 at 1:31 PM
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CAIRO, Aug. 13 (UPI) -- A demonstration calling for a secular state in Egypt drew a few hundred protesters to Tahrir Square in Cairo.

The protest was held Friday evening after iftar, the daily meal that breaks the fast held during daylight hours in Ramadan, CNN reported. Those gathered in the square, scene of huge demonstrations earlier this year calling for the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, demanded a civil state, an end to rule by the military and no sectarianism in government.

Ahmed Maher, leader of the 6 April Youth Movement, blamed the government for the relatively small size of the demonstration. He told Al-Masry Al-Youm that Prime Minister Essam Sharaf and his Cabinet had sown confusion about whether a "For the Love of Egypt" rally to counter a July 29 Islamist demonstration was to be held Aug. 6 or a week later.

"The prime minister's office had given promises in exchange for delaying the march, and these were to release a statement supporting a civil state and endorsing the march the following week. They did neither, so we are here today," he said.

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