Egyptians gather to mark uprising anniversary

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Egyptian protesters try to tear down a cement wall built to prevent them from reaching parliament and the Cabinet building near Tahrir Square, in Cairo, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 24, 2013. Egypt’s black-clad riot police fired tear gas in fierce dawn clashes with dozens of protesters. The violence which was soothed hours later in central Cairo comes on eve of the second anniversary of Egypt’s Jan. 25 uprising, which toppled longtime authoritarian president Hosni Mubarak in 2011. (AP Photo/Hussein Tallal)

CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian opposition protesters are gathering in Cairo's Tahrir Square to mark the second anniversary of the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak's autocratic regime.

The protesters, mostly led by liberals and secularists, are using the anniversary to stage a show of strength in a bid to force President Mohammed Morsi to amend a disputed constitution drafted by his Islamist allies. They are also demanding freedom of expression and the independence of the judiciary.

Hundreds of thousands are expected to turn out for the rallies planned in Cairo and several major cities. Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist groups are staying off the streets to avoid clashes.

Friday's rallies come a day after opposition protesters battled police for hours near Tahrir. The clashes injured scores of opposition protesters.