Defiant protesters remain in Cairo Tahrir Square
CAIRO - Several hundred protesters who staged an overnight demonstration in Cairo's Tahrir square after a deadly military crackdown remained in the square on Sunday after the army backed down on a threat to disperse them.
The protesters, who have barricaded the square with a burnt-out army truck, barbed wire and beams chanted against military chief Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, who has headed the country since president Hosni Mubarak was ousted in February.
"The people demand the toppling of the Field Marshal," they chanted, after spending a nervous night waiting for the army to make good on its warning that it would enforce a three hour predawn curfew.
Soldiers, backed by riot police, had dispersed an overnight protest in the iconic square before dawn on Saturday, with one protester shot dead.
The military has called the protesters outlaws and suggested they might be led by former ruling party officials. It denied using force or live ammunition against the protesters.
Tahrir Square was the epicentre of protests that toppled Mubarak on February 11.
Since his ouster, protesters have started holding regular Friday demonstrations, the last one tens of thousands strong, demanding the trial of Mubarak and other former regime officials.