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"Severely Beaten" Reporter Describes Cairo Scene

Demonstrators shout slogans during a protest in Cairo demanding the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak on Jan. 26, 2011. Getty Images
The Guardian has released an audio recording made by their Cairo reporter, Jack Shenker. He says he was beaten by police with protestors in Cairo and he recorded the audio as he and others were being driven through the city.

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A partial transcript of the audio follows.

Shenker: "So we're in the back of a central security truck after being severely beaten and herded into a sort of holding pen in downtown Cairo. And then transferred us onto the truck and a few more beatings and we're now being driven out to [unintelligible] and the police have been incredibly violent with all of us in the truck. And we're herded in here. There must between 30 and 40 people in a very confined space."

Shenker stops as someone says something to him.

"More than 40, you think?" Shenker asks someone.

"No, yes," says an unidentified person. "In this car maybe as [unintelligible] 60 people or something. And in another car we get more."

"So in this truck we're now thinking somewhere around 50 maybe even 60 people. More than I thought," says Shenker.

Later in the recording Shenker interviews someone near him, asking, "What do you think will happen to us?"

A man answers, "I have no idea. At the beginning I was hoping they were going to drop us in the middle of the desert because that's what they sometimes do, they arrest people and then they drop them off in the middle of the desert. But now apparently we are parked in front of the state security forces center in the middle of the desert which is even more concerning because not only is it state security forces headquarters but it's in the middle of the desert. And it's behind, you know, the [unintelligible] those doors and everything."

The audio recording is chaotic, with Shenker's voice or the voice of his interview subjects rising above a cacophony of other voices around him. It's sounds as if dozens of people are speaking at once.

The Egyptian government flooded the streets of the capital city of Cairo and other cities with riot police Wednesday to deal with protesters demanding an end to President Hosni Mubarak's 29 years of authoritarian rule.

Two people were killed on the second day of protests bringing the total number of dead to six.

Listen to the entire recording here.

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