Thousands of Egyptians crowded into Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday (and in other Egyptian cities) in what organizers labeled a "second revolution," as security forces stayed away to avoid confrontations and the Muslim Brotherhood, a powerful Islamist group, kept its distance out of concern that the demonstrations would only further divide the country. What were the protesters demanding? A tour of today's signs provides some answers.
One critical demand is an end to government corruption--a grievance, Reuters points out, that first brought protesters out into the now-iconic Tahrir Square in January. But the new demonstrations are somewhat sprawling in their critiques of the regime. Take, for instance, one activist's pop culture reference to link the old Egypt regime to neighboring Libya: posters that depict ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi as the gay cowboys from Brokeback Mountain, with the word "mafia" underneath.
Protesters are also demanding a public criminal trial for Mubarak and his family and former aides. On Tuesday, Egyptian authorities announced, in a move that some interpreted as an attempt to temper today's demonstrations, that Mubarak will be tried for ordering the deadly shooting of protesters, abusing power, and squandering public funds. This AP photo shows a banner depicting Mubarak and his wife and declaring, "No forgiveness, our children's blood is not cheap."