Over 1,000 people were injured on Wednesday after Egyptian security forces responded to protesters in Cairo’s Tahrir Square with tear gas and rubber bullets. The crackdown began on Tuesday night after police reportedly beat and arrested family members of those killed during the eighteen-day uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak, at an event commemorating martyrs of the revolution. On Sunday, the family members had erupted in angry protest and hurled rocks at police vehicles after a judge in Cairo again postponed the trial of former interior minister Habib al-Adly and six of his aides.
Al-Adly, one of the most reviled figures of the Mubarak era, was in office for fourteen years before being forced out in the early days of the January 25 revolt. Under his leadership, the Interior Ministry acted as a giant lawless militia, spying on, kidnapping, threatening, humiliating and torturing Egyptian citizens. The State Security branch employed at least 100,000 people and maintained a vast network of informants, all for the single purpose of keeping the regime in power.