Egyptian Chronicles: The Shura Council fire : What I witness

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Shura Council fire : What I witness

I swear I did not have an idea when I saw the smoke across the Nile Street and Zamalak in Agouza that it came from Down Town , I though it was something on fire in Zamalak , I thought of taking a picture for it but could not because of traffic , anyhow I was already going with my aunt to our tailor in Zamalak , we thought to follow the smoke and we did.
We reached the 26th July square and Kasr Nil bridge only to see a terrifying scene , all people were watching the scene and could not know what it was , the black smoke was coming from behind Shepherd hotel , P190808_19.28already that hotel was completely burned in the famous Cairo fire in 1952 , things began to  become more series when police officers tried to control traffic and make a space  to the fire engines from Giza , it meant one thing , the fire engines from Cairo could not control it , with putting in consideration the main fire engine department in downtown is near to Shepherd , we thought that it was in Garden City.
We followed it , I swear we forgot about the tailor and went behind the smoke and the fire engines , when we were in the bridge we found about four ambulances from Giza also behind us; we let themP190808_19.32 pass them , I took my aunt mobile phone Camera and started to take shots. We prayed that it would not be something big , still we started to know that it was huge when we found army helicopters over our heads coming and going to Down Town , we followed the smoke just like the rest of the people , just at the Princess Nametallah Palace at the beginning of Tahrir Square I know from a Taxi Driver beside us that the people’s assembly and the Shura Council were on fire , I arrived at the Tahrir square and I could not believe the scene , the blaze could be seen crystal clear from there.
A lady beggar told us that the fire has started since 3 PM Cairo Local time , already it was about 6:45 PM !!
The helicopters were still coming and the fire orange blazes were appearing behind the Tahrir Complex in scary way , it became a public scene , more people were gathering and unfortunately they were not angry but rather happy that the assembly and the Shura council are on fire of course this is because of their hate to the P190808_19.39[01]regime , yes I will not lie because this is what I heard it . I found several army yellow fire engines coming all the way , the fire engines . It turned to be the Shura Council , which is very ancient landmark about 200 years , it is just the Parliament , My mom informed me that the fire started in the third floor and as it is or was old building building the fire spread because of the wooden windows ,officially 13 persons were injured , but I highly doubted from the numbers of the ambulances ,for God sake they brought the ambulance from Giza .
The anti riot forces began to come , already I should say that this area is the interior ministry area , there are anti-riot forces 24/7  there , but there were not enough ,they needed more forces and they started to come when I was there , look I feel them , you got a huge fire in the most busiest area in Cairo .  I tried to go closer , but I could not because the police began to spread , I even went behind the AUC buildings where they closed the streets , I went from another way , behind the Tahrir Complex where there is a Church ,unfortnately there was just a wedding taking place there, I do not know if they finished quickly or not . The streets in this area were complete wet. I swear , they were completely wet
The location of Shura Council
It was too late when they stopped the traffic and diverted it . We returned home .
Now it is 10:15 PM the fire is there , it reached to the first floor , the problem is that there is underground beside it , also it is near from another ancient landmark called the Egyptian Geographic society , the oldest geographic society in the region and of course beside it has the oldest maps and geographic treasures in the area.
Man I feel so angry and sad , it is just like our old opera, tomorrow they build some ugly modern building suits them , where is the security ?? where is the security of those buildings ??
Now there are about 200 40 fire engines there. The fire reached the first floor , yeah the old ,very old hall from the Khedive time.
I want to cry and scream.
This reminds with the fire of Cairo January 1952 and the Opera fire.
Here is the rest of the photos :

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.
 Updates:
  • I received news that there is another huge fire in the Tax authority  !!! Is that another great Cairo fire ??
  • There is fire in the health ministry building .
  • There is fire in the Post authority building 
  • The Tax authority building is not related to the fire of the Shura Council according to the official
  • The officials are saying that they controlled about 80% of the fire in the Shura Council.
  • According to the official only three rooms or offices were burned in the first floor burned in the fired.
  • King Farouk chair in the Shura council , historical chair was burned among the stuff that was burned in the fire. Thank God it is not in that building , it is the Pharaohnic lobby in the Parliament itself
  • The Post authority , Health ministry building and Tax authority are in the same area.
  •  There is another explosive with fires happening live now in the parliament and the Shura council , this will be on hell of a night
  • The remaining of the building is currently on fire , there will be nothing in the morning
  • They controlled the fire in the real estate tax authority building
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