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» 02/12/2011
EGYPT - ISLAM
First dawn after Mubarak: rebirth and domino effect
In Tahrir Square military and young volunteers clear up the barricades and waste. The Arab countries greet the "historic day" of Egypt, but fear a "domino effect". Gulf activists are preparing protests. China also fears the Egyptian example.

Cairo (AsiaNews) - The Egyptians are still celebrating after the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak last night. Tens of thousands of young people are still in Tahrir Square and surrounding streets, with hoarse voices after a night of shouting and singing. The army has begun to clear the square of barricades and burned cars, while many young people and volunteers are sweeping waste from the area.

Enthusiasm abounds for this great "young people’s revolution ", as it has been christened by the major media in the country, although there are questions about what is expected from the future. The armed forces now have power in hand and promised to "not take the place of the legitimacy desired by the people," guaranteeing "free and transparent presidential elections and changes toward a more democratic constitution.

One demonstrator told AsiaNews: "It is pure joy. We are aware that in life there is no fate or destiny: history is in our hands. "

The international community has hailed the resignation of Mubarak, their old friend, as a "historic day". Many Islamic countries have hailed it "the dawn of a new Egypt”. But there are also concerns about a possible Egyptian "domino effect" on other Arab and non-Arab countries.

In recent weeks, riots have broken out in Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Algeria, Syria, Yemen, all of them motivated by unemployment, high prices, corruption, dictatorial powers.

Many Islamic countries fear that their people will follow the example of Egypt, the most populous Arab country. Activist groups in the Gulf are already planning demonstrations and are demanding the rulers of Bahrain, Emirates, Saudi Arabia not to block rallies. They call on them "understand that it is time to release all political prisoners and prisoners of conscience and draft a constitution that meets the needs of modern times."

China is also among the countries who fear the example of Egypt. Throughout the18 days of protests in Tahrir Square, all information was strictly censored in China. A few days ago, in Guizhou, activists distributed leaflets with news about what happened in Cairo and were arrested by police.

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See also
02/11/2011 EGYPT
President Hosni Mubarak resigns
08/03/2011 EGYPT
A bed-ridden Mubarak goes on trial
02/05/2011 EGYPT
Cairo transition negotiations continue. Mubarak gathers ministers. Tahrir Square will not give in
06/02/2012 EGYPT
Life imprisonment for former Egyptian President Mubarak, sons Gamal and Ala acquitted
12/01/2014 EGYPT - ISLAM
Mubarak acquittal sparks protests in the universities

Editor's choices
EGYPT - ISLAM
What Tayeb and Sisi said is big step towards a revolution in Islam
by Samir Khalil SamirThe grand imam of Al-Azhar slammed literalist interpretations of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, as fundamentalists and Islamic terrorists do. He supports the urgent need for Islam's reform, especially in terms of teaching lay people and clerics. He also calls for an end to mutual excommunication (takfir) between Sunnis and Shias. Egyptian President al-Sisi chose to fight the Islamic state group after it beheaded 21 Coptic Christians, whom he called "Egyptian citizens" with full rights.
SAUDI ARABIA - ISLAM
For head of Al-Azhar, religious education reform is needed to stop Islamic extremismFor Ahmed al-Tayeb, it is urgent to come up with new educational programmes to avoid "corrupt interpretations" of the Qur'an and Sunnah. Islamic terrorism undermines the unity of the Muslim world. He blames Mideast tensions on a "new global colonialism allied to world Zionism". a speech by the Saudi king is read at the conference.
HONG KONG - CHINA - VATICAN
It looks like someone is trying to shout us down
by Card. Joseph Zen Ze-kiunThe widespread optimism concerning the dialogue between the Holy See and China is largely groundless. Some Chinese bishops unable to speak freely are asked "leading" questions. The key issues remain unresolved, namely episcopal appointments and the fate of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association. Benedict XVI's Letter to Chinese Catholics, also cited by Pope Francis, provides guidelines. No agreement is better than a bad agreement. What happened to Msgr. Cosma Shi Enxiang and Msgr. James Su Zhimin? Hong Kong's bishop emeritus, champion of religious freedom in China, delivers a vibrant reflection.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
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