Cairo, Egypt — Tens of thousands of Egyptians joined a massive rally in Tahrir Square on Tuesday to protest President Mohamed Morsi, who granted himself sweeping new powers last week.
Protesters and riot police clashed in Cairo near Tahrir Square in a scene reminiscent of their original push to topple the regime of Hosni Mubarak, reports Al Jazeera.
Tahrir Square was the site of the original protests that ended Mubarak’s reign. Lawyers and others joined the protests on Tuesday, chanting “the people want the regime to fall” and “the people want the downfall of the regime.”
So far there is no indication that Morsi will rescind the decree, though he did speak with the judges council on Monday about the decree. Al Jazeera’s Hoda Abel-Hamid stated of the protests and the decree:
“We are hearing reports of different influential Egyptians who are trying to come up with a solution, some sort of common ground that would be acceptable.”
Yahoo! News notes that clashes broke out in several cities after Morsi’s decree last Thursday. More than 100 people were injured when protesters and members of the Muslim Brotherhood pelted each other with rocks and firebombs in the Nile Delta city of Mahalla el-Kobra.
Laila Salah, a protester in Tahrir Square who stated she voted for Morsi in the summer elections, stated:
“Power has exposed the Brotherhood. We discovered their true face. It’s like a wife whose husband was beating her and then she divorces him and becomes free. If she remarries she’ll never accept another day of abuse.”
The fact that Morsi will not back down from his decree sets the stage for longer protests and a drawn-out battle between the citizens of Egypt and their president.