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Escalating strikes; a new fad in Egypt
Escalating strikes; a new fad in Egypt
The protests planned across the country, spanned the social scale as producers of building material, transport workers, garbage collectors, bakers and textile workers assembled alongside private sector employees
Friday, April 23,2010 10:34
The last few years has seen an escalation in workers' strikes in Egypt which have been prompted by a host of reasons, derived from poor living standards and political repression which may ultimately trigger rebellion by Egypt 's working masses.
The protests planned across the country, spanned the social scale as producers of building material, transport workers, garbage collectors, bakers and textile workers assembled alongside private sector employees
Mohammad Kamal, from the ruling National Democratic Party's Policies Committee, however, stressed that the pessimistic tone used by opposition leaders was overstated
He argued in a recent interview that " Egypt is going through a period of political and economic mobility. Our society is witnessing an unprecedented degree of freedom of expression and it is normal for societies in a state of transition to expressively declare their views and demands,"
It appears the so-called freedom of speech was not taken seriously such as episodes on April 6. Egyptian police and plainclothes security forces assaulted and arrested demonstrators in downtown Cairo who were planning a march to the People's Assembly to put forward demands for political modification to parliament members.
The method in which Mubarak's security apparatus dealt violently with the peaceful demonstrators was greatly denounced not only by opposition factors but by Egypt 's US and European allies.
Opposition leaders described the measures as "insulting to Egyptians" who wished to express their opinions peacefully and call for their basic rights.
The April 6, concept of strikes and protests was promoted and expanded by activists and campaigners using Facebook, blogs, SMS, independent media and simply old-fashioned word-of-mouth. Supporters called for civil disobedience, asking everyone to avoid making purchases and remain at home.
Analysts and researchers explained that the desire to protest has overwhelmed a large sector of society since previously, any strikes or demonstrations were initially directed at foreign occupation. As a rule the Egyptian population is peaceful and tolerant and the ruling regime has used the people's political unawareness to their favour.
However analysts feel, the immediate social and economic concerns are the forces which have recently driven the people to streets pressing for change, after suffering for so long from structural shortcomings and lacking ideological infrastructure.
The Egyptian government's  use of more than 2 million central security soldiers, may have  succeeded in  routing protesting opposition forces however they have also succeeded in raising public suspicions over the motives of the ruling authorities.
tags: NPD / Workers in Egypt / Poor living / Standards / Protests / Employees / Policies Committee / National Democratic Party / Opposition leaders
Posted in Workers  
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