Hundreds protest Egyptian government in SF

February 6, 2011 2:22:50 PM PST
Support for the protesters in Egypt continues to swell in the United States. At least 1,000 people showed their support for the people of both Egypt and Tunisia Saturday in San Francisco.

For the second weekend in a row, San Francisco became the scene of a very large anti-Mubarak demonstration. It lasted several hours Saturday afternoon. Hundreds of people marched around the Civic Center and UN Plaza calling on the Egyptian president to step down. The idea was to show solidarity with the protesters in Egypt who are battling it out with government forces on the streets of Cairo and other cities.

Among those in the crowd was a cousin of missing protester Wael Ghonim. He is the Google marketing executive who became the symbolic voice of the opposition after relatives believe Egyptian forces grabbed him during a protest on January 27.

"He called his aunt, our big aunt, and he told her don't worry about me. I'll be fine, but I'm going to be for a while, disappeared," Hanan Aniss said.

When asked if she knew if he was still alive she said, "We don't know. We don't know and his family got phone calls during the middle of the night telling them we taught him already a lesson.

"I hope the Mubarak regime will understand that they cannot keep leading the people in the way they used to. They have to listen to the people. It's about time. It's well known that Egyptians can be so patient but once they believe in something, no one can stop them," said demonstrator Marwa Sabry.

Protesters in San Francisco say they are also sending a message to President Obama that the U.S. has to find a way for Mubarak to give up power.

San Francisco's was one of several similar protests nationwide. About 150 people gathered outside the federal building in New Orleans. Other demonstrators are planning to spend the night in Lafayette Square across from the White House.