Egypt Islamists block liberals against army
CAIRO - ReutersHundreds of Egyptian protesters demanding the end of military rule were prevented Jan. 31 from reaching parliament by backers of the Muslim Brotherhood, which holds the majority in the assembly.
Inside, army-backed Prime Minister Kamal Ganzouri, 78, who served ousted President Hosni Mubarak in the 1990s, addressed the new parliament for the first time but faced tough criticism by Islamist and other deputies of the slow pace of reform. Some youth members of the Muslim Brotherhood, whose Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) won nearly half the seats in the recent parliamentary election, formed a cordon in the street leading to parliament to prevent protesters from approaching the building.
“The people want the fall of the Brotherhood,” liberal protesters chanted, twisting a chant normally used against the army council t. The standoff reflects the deepening frustration of young activists who galvanized the anti-Mubarak revolt but have seen Islamists capitalize on the political changes by sweeping up seats in the first free parliamentary poll in decades.