Egypt police clamp down on calls for 'poor revolution'

Egypt police clamp down on calls for 'poor revolution'
2 min read
17 October, 2016
Egyptian security forces have begun to clamp down on plans for mass anti-government demonstrations dubbed 'revolution of the poor' set to take place on November 11.
The 'revolution of the poor' mass demonstration was first announced in September [Facebook]

Egyptian security forces have begun to clamp down on plans for mass anti-government demonstrations set to take place next month in protest of the rising cost of living.

The police and military have started to crack down on people accused of organising the protests on November 11 dubbed the "revolution of the poor", which was announced on Facebook in September.

Egypt has recently witnessed shortages of staples such as rice, sugar and oil – due to a shortage of dollars in the country and the plunging black market value of the Egyptian pound.

"There is an ongoing investigation by state security to find out who is behind the social media pages promoting the protests," a security source told a The New Arab correspondent.

"The police and the military have already began coordination to tighten security at large squares and arrested tens of members of the Muslim Brotherhood ahead of the upcoming demonstration.

"Police hope they will be able to prosecute some of the social media promoters before November 11," the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, added.

On Sunday, Egypt's prosecution ordered the detention of eight people for 15 days pending further investigations on various charges including calling for protests on November 11.

Last week, a video of an enraged tuk-tuk driver unloading on the state of Egypt's flagging economy went viral.

Filmed in the crowded lanes of a working class Cairo neighbourhood, the video shows the driver, surrounded by crowds, slamming the government for spending money on pomp at recent state ceremonies while the poor suffer.

The criticism-heavy footage has since been viewed millions of times on Facebook.

On Saturday, a taxi driver set himself on fire in front of an army centre in Sidi Gaber, east Alexandria, reportedly in protest against the country's high prices and poor living conditions.

Witnesses reported that Ashraf Shaheen, 30, started criticising the government before pouring gasoline on himself and setting himself alight.