Today is one year to the day since protestors massed in Cairo's now-legendary Tahrir Square. Inspired by events in nearby Tunisia, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians called on their leader, Hosni Mubarak, to step aside and allow democratic reform to take place. The country, the city, the square, were (and remain) icons for what has become known as the Arab Spring.
The protests that began a year ago brought down a government that for too long had failed to care for its citizens in a manner that was good, decent and just. But in the time since, Egypt has walked a difficult path. How are Egyptians marking this poignant anniversary, how do they feel about the changes that have occurred, and what are their hopes for the years to come?
Here’s a round-up of some of the best insights into these questions from around the world:
Wael Khalil, Egyptian blogger and activist, told Al Jazeera: "Definitely, the revolution has not achieved its goal and that’s why the main slogan now on the street is, people going back to Tahrir Square, because the revolution continues until it realises its goal."
"Everything that has been achieved in the past one year was a result of people’s protests and demands.
"The trial of Mubarak, free elections, participation of people in the elections and other demands were not achieved by power from above, not by SCAF, but people pressuring from below."
Here, protesters who are taking part in the anniversary protests tell us about their experiences in Tahrir Square, its significance to the Egyptian Revolution and how the protest movement has changed since 25 January 2011:
“Our mistake was to leave the square before our demands were met. We should have stayed until they were.”
“Tahrir has been symbolic from day one and acts as a focal pressure point. What comes out of it is what matters.”
“Tahrir Square is symbolic of the revolution. This is where people go if they want to deliver a message. It is a very important place, but I feel that some people are abusing this symbol for their own ends.”
From The Washington Post (video):
Thousands of Egyptians rallied Wednesday to mark the first anniversary of the country's 2011 uprising, with liberals and Islamists gathering on different sides of Cairo's Tahrir Square.
From The Guardian (photos):
A year after the popular uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak, residents in the Egyptian capital are poised for a newly elected government but struggling with rising unemployment
From The Huffington Post (photos):
Take a look back at the start of Egypt's historic revolution with photos from Tahrir Square on January 25, 2011, then see photos from today's demonstrations a year later.