In the center of the capital Cairo and in a number of other Egyptian cities, hundreds of young people gathered Friday night to protest against Abdel Fatah Al Sisi's military regime. At least 74 people were arrested.
Although the protests were small, they are also an extremely rare phenomenon in the North African country, where very strict anti-demonstration laws have been in place since the arrival of Al Sisi in 2013. Thousands of people have since been arrested and risk years of imprisonment, writes The New York Times.
During the spontaneous demonstrations, the protesters shouted slogans such as "Away with Sisi" and "Departure now". The actions took place on, among other things, Tahrir Square in Cairo, where Egyptians brought about the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak in 2011 with massive protests.
According to The New York Times , videos show how there were also smaller protests in the Egyptian city of Alexandria and Mahalla El Kubra.
Food prices are rising
Al Sisi is seen by human rights groups as one of the most harsh leaders in the Middle East, who does not tolerate dissidents. There are thousands of political prisoners in the country's prisons.
In April, Parliament passed a law that allowed 64-year-old Al Sisi to remain in power until 2030. Meanwhile, food prices are rising due to spending cuts following a billion dollar loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Protests follow on online calls
The instigator of Friday night's protests seems to be the Egyptian businessman Mohamed Ali, who has done business with the Egyptian army in the past.
From his self-chosen exile in Spain, Ali records Facebook videos about the corruption and waste of money of Al Sisi and his retinue. He calls on Egyptians to take to the streets and demand the resignation of Al Sisi. He also calls on the Minister of Defense to arrest Al Sisi.
- Want to know what you missed at night? And an update on the most important news around lunch? Subscribe now to our daily newsletter!