Day 05 - Heroes of the Revolution - Cairo/Tahrir Square - January 28, 2012

During January 25-27, 2011, the police used batons, water cannons, tear gas and rubber bullets in an attempt to quell the demonstrations in Tahrir Square. January 28, 2011 marked a turning point in the oppression of the revolutionaries after Egypt saw the flow of dead and wounded flowing into the capital’s hospitals and morgues following the use of live ammunition.

In Tahrir Square I have come across a group of people injured during the revolution camped out in this symbolic Egyptian location in order to petition for the rights of the injured and families of martyrs.

Wael, 38, who was born in the province of Imbaba in Giza, is the father of four children. He poses in this photo in the precise location where a bullet struck his hand last year, as he was protecting his eyes from tear gas launched by the police.

Wael decided to support the demonstrators in Tahrir Square because he wanted to participate with his fellow Egyptians in the fall of the corrupt and totalitarian Mubarak regime. In this location, symbolic of freedom and social justice, he sought to ensure that Gamal, Mubarak's son, would not take over the reins of the country from his father.

From your point of view, what difference is there between the situation a year ago and what is happening in Egypt today?

Mubarak may have been deposed, but his regime is still in place in many parts of society.

What is your hope for the future of Egypt?

True freedom, social justice and the scientific advancement of my country.

What do you think of the current transitional government?

We need a young government that comes from the ranks of the revolution itself – Ganzory, the Prime Minister, is 80 years old...

One year on, what are your living conditions like?

Luckily, I can still use three of my fingers and therefore do my job and - by extension - feed my family, but I am a long way from being the worst off. This is why I come to support the cause of all the others who were heavily wounded, and families of martyrs who are in dire straits, having lost their jobs as a result of their disabilities and having to face heavy health care costs.

Have you received any kind of compensation from the transitional military government?

I have received a total of 20,000 pounds (around US$ 4,000), but the injured need projects to rehabilitate them into other work and help them regain their dignity and place in society.

The appointment of the president of parliament, Saad el-Katatny, has revived a lot of hope in the hearts of the brave revolutionaries after declaring it as his number one priority to support the injured and families of the revolution.

It is hoped that these statements are swiftly followed by concrete, practical action...

Photo & Report by Gaël Favari for The Global Journal

(Photo © Gaël Favari / The Global Journal)


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