2020 Egyptian protests
This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in Arabic. (December 2020) Click [show] for important translation instructions.
The 2020 Egyptian Revolution, also known as the Gallabiya uprising, were decentralised[1] street protests in Egypt that started on 20 September 2020, the anniversary of the 2019 Egyptian protests, calling for Egyptian president Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to resign.[2] Protest locations included Cairo, Giza,[3] Suez, Kafr El Dawwar, Alexandria, Aswan, El Qanater El Khayreya,[4]Faiyum, Minya and Luxor.[2] The sixth day of protests, on 25 September, was called a "Day of Rage".[1]
2020 Egyptian protests
Part of 2018–2021 Arab protests
Date20 September 2020 – 5 November 2020
Caused by
MethodsRiots, Demonstrations
Resulted in
Protests suppressed by force
Parties to the civil conflict
  • Protesters and dissidents of the government
  • Opposition parties
  • Mohamed Ali
Lead figures
(no centralized leadership)Abdel Fattah al-Sisi
  • Police units
  • Armed forces and Military forces
Deaths and injuries
Main articles: Egyptian Crisis (2011–2014) and 2019 Egyptian protests
Mass protests in the Egyptian revolution of 2011 led to the demission of President Hosni Mubarak, the 2012 Egyptian presidential election won by Mohamed Morsi, the 2012–2013 Egyptian protests against the Morsi presidency, the 2013 Egyptian coup d'état which overthrew Morsi, the August 2013 Rabaa massacre by the security forces and army led by general Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, and an authoritarian government under Sisi, who was elected president with no serious opponents in 2014 and 2018. In September 2019, Mohamed Ali, an Egyptian construction contractor living in exile in Spain, circulated videos accusing el-Sisi and the military of extensive corruption and called for street protests to force el-Sisi to resign.[5] Protests took place on 20–21 September 2019, after which Amnesty International described the Sisi government being "shaken to its core",[6] Protests continued on 27 September. The Egyptian authorities responded with 4300 arrests of protestors and lawyers.[7][8] Well-known arrestees included the Egyptian blogger, software developer and activist Alaa Abd el-Fattah, who had not participated in the 2019 Egyptian protests, arrested on unknown charges,[9] and his lawyer Mohamed al-Baqer, director of the human rights organisation Adalah Center for Rights and Freedoms.[10] Both were tortured in welcome parades in Tora Prison.[11][12] Amnesty described the crackdown as the biggest during the el-Sisi presidency.[12]
August 2020 call for protests
A Twitter campaign with an Arabic hashtag equivalent to #We Don't Want You started on 29 August 2020 after el-Sisi suggested that a referendum could be called to dismiss him from the presidency if people were unsatisfied with his decisions. The campaign, supported by Mohamed Ali,[3] called for el-Sisi to step down and for protests on 20 September 2020, the anniversary of the 2019 protests.[13] Housing demolotions were another key factor motivating the protests in poor communities, both urban and rural.[14]
Egyptian security forces attempted to prevent protests by arresting political figures, including Amin al-Mahdi, and activists, especially in Suez. Cafes were forced to close.[3]
September 2020
Protests started on 20 September in Giza and in several suburbs in Cairo, calling for el-Sisi to step down. Authorities' reactions included live bullets and tear gas.[3] Protests calling for el-Sisi's resignation also took place in Suez, Kafr El Dawwar, Alexandria, Aswan, and El Qanater El Khayreya.[4]
In Aswan, security forces attacked the protestors, who set a presidential building on fire in response. People in Kadiya in Giza Governorate, angry at the demolitions of buildings claimed by the government to have been illegally built, turned over a police truck.[4]
Protests continued on 21 and 22 September. Protest locations on 22 September included Giza, Faiyum, Minya, Luxor and Aswan.[2] In the village of al-Kadaya in Atfih, protestors refused a police objection to the holding of a protest by overturning a police car and setting it on fire. In al-Hawarta in Minya Governorate, protestors pushed a police vehicle into a canal.[2]
Calls for more protests continued, calling for a "Friday of Anger" (or "Day of Rage"[1]) protests. Mohamed Ali claimed that the numbers of protestors were rising daily. Ali argued in favour of a critical protest mass, stating "If five million people took to the streets, no one would be arrested at all."[15]
On 25 September, protests took place in Cairo, Giza, Luxor and Damietta Governorate after the Friday prayer session, again calling for el-Sisi to resign.[16][1] Civil disobedience techniques used by protestors included burning tyres to block roads.[1]
Videos posted on social media since 20 September appeared to show several very small demonstrations involving up to several dozen people in different parts of the country.[17]
Confrontations between police and protestors continued on 30 September in the village of al-Awamiya in Luxor, with a fatal shooting of a protestor. The sequence of events started with troops and armoured vehicles arriving at the village. Police raided al-Rawi's home, trying to arrest Awais al-Rawi's younger brother. A police officer insulted and slapped al-Rawi's father, who objected to the arrest. Awais al-Rawi objected verbally about the treatment of his father and the argument escalated. A police officer shot Awais al-Rawi four times using a "side arm", once in the face, killing him. The funeral took place the same day. Mourners chanted against the police and el-Sisi, calling el-Sisi "the enemy of God". Police fired warning shots and teargas and arrested 20 funeral participants. Mourners kidnapped and beat a police officer. The officer was released after hours of negotiation between police and tribal elders.[18][19]
A video of the funeral was posted under a trending hashtag with the Arabic equivalent of "Friday we're coming out in our millions." The officer suspected of the shooting of Awais al-Rawi was suspended from duty, according to a leak from the prosecutor's office.[18][19]
October 2020
Between 3 and 6 October, massive demonstrations in governances against the government and poverty rates in the country spread with the injury of one person. Clashes were witnessed across Alexandria and in narrow suburbs of Cairo. Textile workers and perfume makers went of strike in their hundreds. Anger rose up again. Mass detentions were made in 7–8 October due to protests against the economy. Bread protests were witnessed across Egypt for the second time in 2020. Bullets were seen fired at protesters, who threw stones and pelted eggs. DW News and Middle East Monitor claimed that the protests against prices of bread, eggs and bananas were not the first for the year.
Large-scale demonstrations on 26–27 October, scattered across the nation, kicked off[citation needed] after the French president, Emmanuel Macron described the murder of Samuel Paty as "a typical Islamist terrorist attack"[20] and said that Paty "was killed for teaching children freedom of speech".[21]
November 2020
Protests by Sudanese migrants and refugees against the brutal killing of a child was met with arrest and violence with tear gas and water cannon fired at the demonstrators. There has been no confirmation over deaths and injuries during the peaceful protests. Amnesty.org reported the peaceful protests on 4–5 November.[22]
Rutgers University law professor Sahar Aziz described the protests as decentralised, with no leadership by known opposition groups.[1]
The uprising has been labeled the galabiya uprising due to the protests taking place mostly in rural areas and Upper Egypt where there is less security than in the main squares in big cities.[18]
Deaths and injuries
One protestor in the 25 September protests in al-Blida in Giza Governorate, Sami Wagdy Bashir, was killed, and three others were wounded, according to the human rights group Najda.[1]
On 23 September 2020, the number of people detained as a result of the protests was estimated as 200 by Middle East Monitor.[2] Among these, 150, including 14 minors according to the Belady Foundation, appeared at State Security institutions and were charged with "belonging to a terrorist organization, spreading false news, and misuse of social media.[23]
Four Warraq Island protestors were arrested in the Warraq Island protest ongoing since 2017.[23]
Khaled Ali and other lawyers stated that there was similar confusion to the arrests following the 2019 protests, with difficulty in contacting the detainees' families.[23]
On 28 September 2020, the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms said that at least at least 382 people had been detained since 20 September.[17]
Fake videos
According to Mada Masr, United Media Services Group (UMSG), which is owned by one of the Egyptian intelligence agencies (Mukhabarat, military intelligence, National Security Agency) and owns Youm7, prepared fake protest videos, including one of a would-be protest in Nazlit al-Samman in Giza Governorate. UMSG sent the videos to Al Jazeera and to international media associated with the Muslim Brotherhood, including El Sharq TV. Both Al Jazeera and El Sharq broadcast the videos, presenting them as genuine. UMSG presented this as evidence that "enemy media" were careless in verifying the authenticity of their material.[24]
Waves of protests
The first wave of rallies were April-May. The second wave of rallies were June-August. The third wave of demonstrations and manifestations and remonstrations were in September-October. Riots were reported by some and some have disagreed. The government hasn't contained the protests really until end of October.
  1. ^ a b c d e f g "One 'killed' in Egypt as protesters demand el-Sisi resign". Al Jazeera English. 26 September 2020. Archived from the original on 27 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Demonstrations in Egypt continue for third day". Middle East Monitor. 23 September 2020. Archived from the original on 27 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  3. ^ a b c d "Anti-gov't protests in Egypt's Giza amid tight security presence". Al Jazeera English. 20 September 2020. Archived from the original on 24 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  4. ^ a b c "Protests against Sisi's rule break out across Egypt". Middle East Monitor. 21 September 2020. Archived from the original on 27 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  5. ^ "In rare protests, Egyptians demand President el-Sisi's removal". Al Jazeera English. 21 September 2019. Archived from the original on 21 September 2019. Retrieved 21 September 2019.
  6. ^ "Egypt: World leaders must act to stop President al-Sisi's repressive crackdown". Amnesty International. 24 September 2019. Archived from the original on 26 September 2019. Retrieved 26 September 2019.
  7. ^ "European Parliament resolution on Egypt". European Parliament. 23 October 2019. 2019/2880(RSP). Archived from the original on 25 October 2019. Retrieved 25 October 2019.
  8. ^ "Egypt: Largest wave of mass arrests since President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi came to power". Amnesty International. 2 October 2019. Archived from the original on 3 October 2019. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  9. ^ "Writer and activist Alaa Abd El Fattah arrested from police probation". Mada Masr. 29 September 2019. Archived from the original on 29 September 2019. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  10. ^ "'We're being chased': Egyptian human rights lawyers struggle under crackdown". Middle East Eye. 30 September 2019. Archived from the original on 30 September 2019. Retrieved 30 September 2019.
  11. ^ "Alaa Abd El Fattah and his lawyer recount humiliation and beatings in maximum-security prison". Mada Masr. 10 October 2019. Archived from the original on 10 October 2019. Retrieved 10 October 2019.
  12. ^ a b "Egypt: Torture of activist Alaa Abdel Fattah illustrates use of extreme brutality to crush dissent". Amnesty International. 10 October 2019. Archived from the original on 10 October 2019. Retrieved 10 October 2019.
  13. ^ "Online calls for anti-Sisi protests in Egypt may fall flat". al-Monitor. 9 September 2020. Archived from the original on 11 September 2020. Retrieved 11 September 2020.
  14. ^ "Egypt: Rare protests met with unlawful force and mass arrests". Amnesty International. 2 October 2020. Archived from the original on 4 October 2020. Retrieved 4 October 2020.
  15. ^ "Egypt braces for fresh anti-Sisi protests". Al Jazeera English. 25 September 2020. Archived from the original on 27 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  16. ^ "Egypt: Friday protests demand al-Sisi's departure". Anadolu Agency. 25 September 2020. Archived from the original on 27 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  17. ^ a b https://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-politics/several-hundred-arrests-amid-protest-calls-in-egypt-rights-group-idUSKBN26J2QZ
  18. ^ a b c "Egypt police kill Luxor man then shoot mourners at his funeral". Middle East Monitor. 1 October 2020. Archived from the original on 4 October 2020. Retrieved 4 October 2020.
  19. ^ a b "Clashes in Egypt's Luxor after police kill man for defending his father". Middle East Eye. 3 October 2020. Archived from the original on 4 October 2020. Retrieved 4 October 2020.
  20. ^ Willsher, Kim (1 October 2020). "Macron speaks of 'existential' fight against terrorism after teacher killed in France". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 18 October 2020.
  21. ^ "'Our compatriot was killed for teaching children freedom of speech': French president Macron over beheading of teacher". Free Press Journal. Retrieved 18 October 2020.
  22. ^​https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2020/11/egypt-protests-by-sudanese-migrants-and-refugees-over-brutal-killing-of-a-child-met-with-violence-and-arrests/
  23. ^ a b c "150 arrested on September 20 anniversary after small, scattered protests". Mada Masr. 24 September 2020. Archived from the original on 24 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  24. ^ "Sisi, Public Prosecution acknowledge protests after week of silence, 68 minors released". Mada Masr. 28 September 2020. Archived from the original on 28 September 2020. Retrieved 28 September 2020.
Last edited on 21 March 2021, at 19:47
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