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From Tahrir to Toronto: Protesters United for a Cause

February 1, 2017
People begin to gather before a rally protesting President Donald Trump’s travel ban on refugees and citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations, Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

(By Sara Khorshid, Aswat Masriya) Chants, slogans and drum beats came to a halt. The silence that replaced them was intermittently interrupted by “Allahu Akbar” as a group of protesters stood in neat lines at the center of the protest crowd and performed the Muslim prayers. Many more protesters surrounded them, watching patiently in a scene that was reminiscent of Downtown Cairo’s Tahrir Square amid the January 2011 Uprising when Christian protesters circled the group of praying Muslims to protect them against possible abrupt attacks by police personnel. This was not Tahrir Square, but Downtown Toronto, outside the U.S. Consulate, where hundreds of protesters gathered on Monday, Jan. 30, 2017, beating the minus 7 Celsius winter temperature, to protest against U.S. President Donald Trump’s recent executive order that imposed U.S. entry restrictions on seven Muslim-majority countries. Police personnel and vehicles were also visible, but only to provide protection for the protesters throughout the six-hour anti-Trump protest. A mother holding her baby while chanting, a senior Canadian in her sixties who is taking part in a demonstration for the first time in her life, an American student in Toronto who is angry…

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