Bloggers report on strike in Egypt

On April 6th, protests took place in Egypt against the rising costs of basic foods. There are English-language reports in the International Herald Tribune and on Reuters, among other places. Egyptian security forces brutally suppressed these demonstrations; according to international journalist reports, anywhere from 200 (IHT) to 500 protesters (Bloomberg) have been arrested.

AFP reports that the Egyptian security forces have arrested two bloggers who wrote about the protest and its suppression, as well as the organizer of the Facebook group that has called for another strike in May. AFP argues that this symbolizes the rising political power of bloggers in Egypt (something that I’ve already commented on at Khaldoun and Culture Matters).

To that end, I thought I’d provide links to a few blogs where the fallout from the strike is being described. In Arabic, there is tadamonmasr, which reports that at least 4 have been killed in Mahalla al-Kubra (a poor neighborhood that was a center of protest), including a 15-year old boy shot in the head by police. Tadamonmasr compares the actions of the Egyptian security forces to the Zionist state’s attacks on Palestinian youths, and describes the murdered protesters as “martyrs.” Also in Arabic is an anonymous blog site devoted specifically to the 6 April Strike with extensive pictures and descriptions of the protest. For those of you who don’t read Arabic, Sunbula has been translating some of the Arabic-language blog postings on KABOBfest.

I’ll post more links as I come across them.

– L.L. Wynn

Update 9 April 2008: See al-Jazeera for more English-language coverage, and Egyptian blogger Zeinobia reviews the media coverage of the strike in the Egyptian press.

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One Response to Bloggers report on strike in Egypt

  1. Raffe says:

    Unfortunately my Arabic is dreadful.
    It’s interesting to see that in many cases worldwide the bloggers are the new fourth estate. Considering that media is either dramatically censored by government, as in the case of many Arab states such as Syria and Egypt, or that they’re more than willing to either hold off or simply refuse to print stories that damage the administration, such as with the U.S. mainstream media.
    There was a similar situation last year in Burma when the government began massacring the monks. The world discovered it due to bloggers and it was kept alive by them and a variety of social networking sites such as facebook.

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