Middleeast

The protectors of Tahrir

Updated 10:29 PM ET, Tue March 5, 2013
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Members of Tahrir Bodyguard demonstrate in a protest demanding an end to sexual violence in Egypt. KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images
A Tahrir Bodyguard volunteer at a protest against sexual violence in February. As well as patrolling the square, the group offers free self-defense classes to women. KHALED DESOUKI/AFP/Getty Images
Tahrir Bodyguard volunteer Mark Beshara, 27, amongst the crowd. Beshara joined the group after witnessing a mob sexually assault a woman in Tahrir and feeling powerless to intervene alone. Courtesy Tahrir Bodyguard
The group is comprised of men and women, although generally only the men in the patrols attempt to break up assaults when a mob is attacking. Volunteers, including Beshara, have sustained injuries during the patrols. Courtesy Tahrir Bodyguard
The view on the crowds in Tahrir. Attacks typically occur during mass demonstrations after nightfall. Courtesy Tahrir Bodyguard
The mass demonstrations in Cairo's Tahrir Square have often been violent. In this picture, taken on January 30, 2013, a masked protester readies to throw a molotov cocktail. MOHAMMED ABED/AFP/Getty Images