Death in Cairo
by Yusuf Sayman
On July 5, I was standing outside the Republican Guard building in Cairo where many Egyptians believed their recently ousted president, Mohamed Morsi, was being held. Military troops in fatigues guarded the entrance, blocked off from the street by a barbed wire fence. On the other side of the road, thousands of Morsi’s supporters were massed.
Two days earlier, when Morsi was still technically Egypt’s president, I had photographed an earlier protest at this very spot. But it had been a vastly different scene—with anti-Morsi demonstrators calling for Morsi’s ouster just hours before Egypt’s army chief went on television and announced that he’d removed Morsi from office. There were no armed personnel carriers at the entrance, no barbed wire. Just a couple of soldiers standing around chatting. When an officer stepped forward to urge the crowd not to get too close to the gate, they cheered.
But now, the crowd was hostile—and growing. Morsi’s supporters chanted angrily against the army as men at the front of the protest tried to keep enraged colleagues from crossing the road, fearing it might provoke a violent response. As two colleagues and I approached the barbed wire, the soldiers warned us to leave. One officer then made an announcement: “Do not cross the street, or force will be used.”
Soon after, a lone protester pushed through the chaos and began to cross. His name was Mohamed Sobhi, an engineer born in 1977, wearing a long beard, sunglasses, a grey t-shirt and khaki pants. In his hand, he held a poster of Morsi. It was obvious that he planned to hang it on the wire. He came close, but then, just after 3pm, I heard a lone gun shot. Sobhi dropped to the floor, felled by a bullet to the head, and the first demonstrator to be killed by the army in Egypt’s ongoing crisis lay bleeding in the street.
These photos show that moment.
While I was waiting for Godot, @ Kilis, Turkey
Syrian refugees crossing the border between Turkey and Syria, near the village of Hacipasa, Hatay. The Orontes river starts in the Beqae valley and meets the Mediterranean in Samandagi, Hatay.
an istanbul state of mind, #2
An Istanbul state of mind, #1
from the project “Running from home” – Syrian refugees in Turkey.
Antakya, Turkey. Ahmed Hakeem with his family, from Lattakia. Ahmed have been having problems with the Syrian government since the 80’s. He was arrested in the age of 15 for being a member of Muslim Brotherhood, which he denies, and spent 11 years in prison. He has been visited by the police on a regular basis since his release.
Azaz, Syria, August 7 2012 Town of Azaz, 45 km from Aleppo, and a five minute drive from Turkey, was hit by a Syrian fighter jet a week after these photos were taken. Azaz had seen a battle between FSA and the Syrian army about a moth ago, and became a FSA stronghold.
pictures from the recent project I am working on, “Running from home” – Syrian refugees in Turkey.
1. Antakya, Turkey. Maysoon Turkmen came to Turkey 2 moths ago. Her husband Hassan is in Syria fighting with the FSA. Like many other Syrians, she is living on the help from IHH (a Turkish NGO, famous for the Mavi Marmara incident) She says “everything will be okay in syria after the revolution”, “nothing matters other than Essad leaving”.
2. Antakya, Turkey. Abu Rahman, a Kurdish actor and artist protesting the Assad regime since 1995. Abu Rahman was arrested 5 times for being the leader of an illegal theatre group performing secretly in private homes. After the start of the revolution, he decided to step down from the leadership of the group, he says “We want to take down the leader of the country, so we thought we should not have a leader in the theatre group”.
3. Antakya, Turkey. Abu Beshir, a logistics manager for the FSA. He was working for Coca-Cola before the revolution. Talking about the current situation, he says "The war haven’t started yet”.
"raise the sky. we got to fly over the land, over the sea "