'Leave!': Pro-democracy protests follow Sisi outside New York hotel

'Leave!': Pro-democracy protests follow Sisi outside New York hotel
Diaspora Egyptians have protested outside the hotel of President Abdelfattah al-Sisi as he arrived in New York.
2 min read
21 September, 2019
Sisi arrived in New York amid protests in Egypt [AFP]
Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi arrived to the United States on Friday as protesters called for his downfall across Egypt.

But demonsrations followed the Egyptian military leader in New York, where he was due to attend the UN General Assembly. 

Chants such as “the people want the fall of the regime” were heard – an iconic phrase from the Arab Spring that swept the region in 2011 - outside his hotel in New York, echoing similar sentiments from protesters in Egypt.

Sisi is marking his sixth participation in the 74th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) and has thus far remained silent on the protests.

A hashtag which translates to “where is the army’s statement” emerged online, where people expressed anger at the political and military elite’s silence toward events in the country.

Hundreds of Egyptians took to Cairo's Tahrir Square demanding the resignation of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Friday evening, prompting authorities to carry out sweeping arbitrary arrests across the country.

The demonstration came in response to calls for protests by a self-exiled Egyptian businessman who recently claimed large-scale corruption by the military and government.

Security forces attempted to break up the gathering in Cairo, with skirmishes taking place between police and protesters in the roads leading up to Tahrir Square.

Protesters were seen on videos posted to social media calling for Sisi's resignation while ear gas was deployed by police attempting to disperse crowds.

"The numbers of those arrested across a number of demonstrations in Cairo are between 400-500," lawyer Amr Imam, who was an eyewitness, told The New Arab's Arabic site.

Civil rights group the Egyptian Commission for Rights and Freedoms also confirmed that dozens were arrested in the capital city.

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