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Egyptians show indifference to strike call

(Xinhua)

10:51, February 12, 2012

CAIRO, Feb. 11 (Xinhua) -- Egyptians rejected a call for civil disobedience on Saturday as most people went to work and no big rallies were held across the country.

Some youth groups called for a nationwide strike on Saturday, the first anniversary of the fall of ex-president Hosni Mubarak, to press the ruling military council to immediately hand over power to a civilian authority. The majority of political parties refused to join the campaign.

A rather indifferent response from citizens showed most of the Egyptian people wished stability and development after a year of frequent protests.

In Tahrir Square in downtown Cairo, traffic was normal and there was no gathering of large number of protesters, a Xinhua reporter said.

Many office workers, who usually have a day off on Saturday, went to work to express their rejection to the civil disobedience. They believe the general strike was meant to ruin the country and damage its economy.

"There is no such thing as civil disobedience. It's something that means the fall and collapse of the state. This is not fair," said a pedestrian in Cairo.

"We're working without civil disobedience and all buses operate with full capacity. We want the country to get better, so we all should work for the sake of Egypt," a bus driver said.

Transportation was normal in bus stations, metro stations and railways stations in Cairo. "No for Civil Disobedience ... Yes for Stability and Production," read a banner hanged outside the Cairo Railway Station.

Hani Hegab, chairman of the Railways Authority in Cairo, said " no problems appeared at all. This is because all the workers of the Railways Authority have national awareness and know the best interests of their country. They have come today to say that they support the nation's best interest and they are against vandalism and strike."

Egyptian citizens rejected calls for the civil disobedience day and showed their aspiration for protecting their rights in a civil way, said Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Fayza Abul-Naga on Saturday.

On Friday, the supreme military council issued a statement to warn of the attempts to spread chaos and vowed to fight them.

The statement said the military council will not bow to any threats, pressure or accept dictations and reiterated its promise to hand over power to an elected civilian authority at the end of June.

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