- Title: EGYPT: Muslims hold Eid prayers in Tahrir square
- Date: 31st August 2011
- Summary: CHILDREN WAVING EGYPTIAN FLAGS
- Embargoed: 15th September 2011 13:00
- Location: Egypt, Egypt
- Country: Egypt
- Topics: Politics,Religion
- Reuters ID: LVA8O4MB19FRDEE61P34H064YCVG
- Aspect Ratio:
- Story Text: Egyptian Muslims gathered in Tahrir square on Tuesday (August 30) to celebrate the first Eid al-Fitr since the ousting of President Hosni Mubarak in February.
As crowds gathered to pray, riot police surrounded the roundabout in the centre of the square, where tents were set up during the 18-days of the revolution, and in sporadic sit-ins in the months that followed.
But a sheikh leading the prayers said Tuesday's gathering was nothing to do with protests.
"Today is just for Eid prayers, we do not have anything else planned. We do not have any protests planned, we do not have any sit-ins planned and we do not have any demands except for us to say the Eid prayers and celebrate," he said.
Dr.Mazhar Shaheen, the sheikh of a nearby mosque, who refers to himself as the 'revolution's preacher', said Egyptians needed to unite for a brighter future after months of demonstrations and strikes.
"In the coming phase, the Egyptian people, as well as all political and Islamic movements, must unite under one cause, and that is the demands of the revolution, without any division, factionalism or fragmentation. The Egyptian revolution succeeded because of the unity that existed between the people in Tahrir, and Egypt absolutely needs this unity in the coming phase," he said.
During Eid prayers, worshippers waved Egyptian flags in the square in an echo of the revolution.
They also remembered those who had been killed in the 18-day uprising.
One worshipper said this Eid was a particularly special one.
"Freedom, freedom, powerful freedom. Happiness and freedom for the Egyptian people, and may every year find you in good health and may God always keep things as good as they are," said Alaa Ahmed Mostafa.
Egyptians also showed their support for the Libyan rebels, following their recent victory against Muammar Gaddafi, and remembered anti-government protesters in Yemen.
Eid al-Fitr is the feast that marks the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
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