Two years after Mubarak's fall, Egyptians still fighting

| Friday, Jan. 25, 2013, 12:05 a.m.

CAIRO — On the eve of the second anniversary of the revolution that deposed President Hosni Mubarak, Egyptians continue to fight for “Bread, Freedom and Social Justice!” — one of the demands that sent millions into the streets in 2011.

Today's opposition fears the creation of an Islamic state in the Arab world's most populous nation, and with it the loss of women's rights and other freedoms.

In Tahrir Square, the revolution's epicenter, signs still demand “the downfall of the regime.” But those signs refer to Muslim Brotherhood's Muhamed Morsy, who replaced Mubarak.

The Brotherhood and its allies, the ultra-Islamic Salafis, control Egypt's presidency and parliament.

The anniversary arrives with Egypt in economic crisis. Tourism, once a main currency-earner for businesses and the state, is practically nonexistent; the Egyptian pound has been in freefall since December, and new taxes on basic goods are expected.

On Thursday, protesters in Tahrir Square tried to level cement blocks barricading side streets. They threw Molotov cocktails and flares at riot police on the other side of the walls as police fired tear gas. Clashes continued into the night, with the injured on both sides taken to hospitals.

Betsy Hiel is the Tribune-Review's foreign correspondent; email her at bhiel@tribweb.com. Email Justin Merriman at jmerriman@tribweb.com.

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