Update: Over 10,000 in Tahrir for ‘Friday of the Martyrs’ Dreams,’ say witnesses

Thousands of protesters occupied Tahrir Square throughout the day Friday in a protest they have called the "Friday of the Martyrs' Dreams."

Some witnesses estimated at least 10,000 protesters were in the square by Friday evening.

Demonstrators marched from around Cairo toward the iconic home of the 25 January uprising that began last year, chanting, "Down with military rule, we the people are the red line" and "The people's first demand: leave, leave Field Marshal," referring to head of the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces Hussein Tantawi.

The April 6 Youth Movement could be seen distributing fliers in Tahrir, demanding the SCAF hand over power to the newly elected lower house of parliament, the People's Assembly, and hold presidential elections within two months in order to yield a president who can achieve the demands of the revolution.

The unity of the military is the true guarantee of stability in Egypt, and thus the Egyptian army must stay away from politics and remain neutral, the fliers read.

Earlier in the day, around 1,000 demonstrators performed Friday morning prayers in the square.

Mohamed Ali, a revolutionary from Port Said, delivered the Friday sermon in the square. He said the SCAF had turned against the revolution, and warned that people "will not leave the squares until the SCAF leaves."

Ali criticized calls to celebrate the first anniversary of the 25 January revolution while 12,000 civilians are still being held in military prisons. He called on the SCAF to hand over power to a civilian government by 25 January at the latest.

More than 75 political parties, movements and coalitions are demonstrating in Tahrir and across the country, according to Al-Ahram newspaper.

A march coming from the Cairo district of Shubra, chanting against military rule, headed toward Tahrir on Friday afternoon.
At around the same time in the neighborhood of Mohandiseen, dozens gathered outside Mostafa Mahmoud mosque after prayers and chanted, "Down with military rule" and "Revolution, revolution until victory." They raised images of those killed during the revolution and banners demanding a speedy transfer of power to civilian rule.
About 20 members of the "Ana Asef Ya Rayes" (I Am Sorry Mr. President) group tried to assault the protesters using wooden batons and knives, Al-Masry Al-Youm reported.
Protesters read a statement from a stage set up in Tahrir, demanding the military form a consultative council made up of revolutionaries and headed by Ahmed Harara, a protester who lost an eye during the 25 January uprising and the other in November clashes between protesters and police on Mohamed Mahmoud Street.
The statement also called for the military to deliver power to either the head of the Supreme Constitutional Court, the speaker of the People's Assembly or a civilian presidential council. It called for a sit-in in Tahrir until these demands are achieved, and threatened escalation if the military council ignores the protesters.

The protests will be a preamble to demonstrations planned for the 25 January revolution's anniversary this coming Wednesday, said all participating groups in a joint statement issued Thursday night.

The statement said the Friday protest would come within the framework of a week political forces have named “The Week of Mourning and Anger,” reported Al-Ahram.

Participating groups include the Maspero Youth Union, National Association for Change, April 6 Youth Movement, Egyptian Social Democratic Party and Tagammu Party.

The Dostor online news service reported Friday morning that activists have distributed approximately 100,000 leaflets to publicize the Friday protests.

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