With voting in elections due to begin on Monday, an uneasy calm has been restored to Cairo. But a tense stand-off remains. The ruling military council is refusing demands to step down immediately and the protesters are making it clear that they are not going away.
The demonstrators’ mistrust of military motives has been compounded by the deaths and injuries of the past few days.
The army says it is sorry, and has put up cement barriers which, says General Taher Abdullah, are to protect the protesters: “Of course, no one can deny that what happened is regrettable. The army regrets it, but we’ve found the best way to separate both sides to secure the demonstrators.”
But protesters have clear ideas about what they want to see happening: “The revolutionaries want the constitution of a national unity council to create a modern Egypt…and they want the army to go back to barracks.”
The military council insists people must focus on the elections rather than street protests, but there is no evidence that the demonstrators in Tahrir Square will do that.
Tensions remain on streets of Cairo