Security forces cancelled a proposed labour demonstration on Tuesday and detained three street vendors who had attempted to go the cancelled demonstration. It was announced during a press conference held on Wednesday for street vendors that the three were detained on suspicion of protesting for political reasons.
The street vendors had announced they would join in to protest their relocation from the pavements of downtown Cairo to Al-Turgoman in August. However, the detainees were released on the same day when the vendors released a statement saying they were not protesting for political reasons.
The statement read that the demonstration was going to take place in front of the cabinet but the location was changed due to security concerns. Despite the change of the location the security forces cancelled the unauthorised demonstration, the statement said.
The Protest Law bans people from protesting without prior authorisation from security forces.
Another press conference was held on Tuesday, where street vendors discussed their problems, openly stating that the governor and the deputy governor never discussed with them the relocation decision, which caused outrage among many of the street vendors in downtown for being “non-commercial” area.
Ramadan Al-Sawy, a street vendor in downtown Cairo, stated that they have lost income since the relocation and, with the feast of Eid Al-Adha approaching, they can’t afford to buy meat for their children.
Al Sawy said that he spent 25 days in Al-Turgoman, where he wasn’t able to make an income as there were no customers. “We can’t work in a market with no customers,” said Al- Sawy
His son, Ahmed Al- Sawy, was one of the detainees. Al Sawy claimed that his son was beaten by the police. He added that, although they are protesting against the relocation, they have nothing to do with political issues.