Labor strikes erupted Tuesday and Wednesday across cities in Egypt as the nation enters its third week of protests against the government of President Hosni Mubarak, according to the New York Times.
The Washington Post reported spontaneous strikes in cities like Mahala, where thousands of workers demanded pay increases and permanent contracts from both state-run and private companies.
Freelance reporters at the newspaper Al Ahram pushed for a change at the state's most powerful propaganda tool, calling attacks by pro-Mubarak protesters on Tahrir Square an "offense to the whole nation," reported the New York Times.
Citing 17,000 loose prisoners, Mubarak's foreign minister, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, refused to discard emergency laws, which allow authorities to detain people without charge, said the New York Times.
A Human Rights Watch report said Tuesday that upwards of 300 people have died in Egypt since demonstrations began Jan. 28.