Unrest continues in Cairo, say eyewitnesses

Saturday, January 29, 2011

CAIRO/ISTANBUL - Unrest continued in parts of Cairo early Saturday morning despite the government-ordered curfew and military patrolling streets, eyewitness reports said.

The eyewitness accounts told of plundering of shops going on, while in two districts of Cairo, police stations were stormed by protesters, freeing the inmates.

According to an Al Jazeera television report, there was also unrest overnight in the northern city of Alexandria.

Further eyewitness accounts said that hooligans had stormed into a hotel on the road leading to the pyramids at Gizeh, leading to confrontations with the hotels tourist guests. More details were not immediately available.

The ongoing disturbances follow the dramatic events Friday when unrest spread throughout the country, with at least 13 protesters killed in clashes with security forces.

The military was called out Friday to reinforce the police, patrolling the streets with tanks and armoured vehicles.

In a late-night television address, President Hosny Mubarak rejected calls for him to step down, and instead he called on his cabinet to resign.

In his 11-minute speech he said a new cabinet would be named Saturday and he warned against chaos while promising “new steps leading toward more democracy” and improvements in living standards, job opportunities and health care.

But after the 82-year-old leader’s speech, demonstrators continued with their demand that Mubarak must go. The former military general has been in power since the October, 1981 assassination of then-president Anwar Sadat.

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