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Human Rights and Democracy in EU Foreign Policy by Rosa Balfour

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7 The search for an EU policy towards Egypt

7.1 Introduction

On 25 January 2011, following the sparkler lit by the ‘Jasmine Revolution’ which ousted Tunisian President Ben Ali, Egyptian youths took to Tahrir Square in Cairo in an announced demonstration and demanded an end to President Hosni Mubarak's thirty year-old regime. Over the following days, as the peaceful demonstrators were attacked by the police and regime loyalists, the protests spread to embrace broader sectors of society. The army's soldiers, called in to repress the demonstrators, sided with the people pushing for an end to the repression of freedoms, as well as expressing socio-economic discontent. Between 10 and 12 million people took to the streets across Egypt, an unprecedented ...

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