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BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo

 
Anonymous Coward
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07/23/2011 02:36 PM
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BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo
Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo

Associated Press= CAIRO (AP) — Scuffles have broken out between protesters and men armed with knives on the street leading to the military headquarters in Cairo.

Witnesses say the chaos erupted when men standing in front of army barricades began throwing stones at the protesters, who threw stones back at them. The demonstrators are angry at the military rulers who took over control of the country after a popular uprising forced ex-President Hosni Mubarak to step down more than five months ago.

One of the protesters, Selma el-Dahab, says Saturday's rally was attacked from the front.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

CAIRO (AP) — The head of Egypt's ruling military council on Saturday praised the youth who led the uprising that toppled President Hosni Mubarak in an apparent effort to diffuse growing tensions between activists and the army.

Many protesters have grown distrustful of the military rulers who assumed control of the country after Mubarak was forced to step down more than five months ago. Critics accuse the generals of dragging their feet in bringing former regime officials to trial and purging the government of Mubarak loyalists as well as trying civilians in military courts.

The standoff came to a head late Friday in Cairo when a large group of protesters marched toward the headquarters of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to denounce what the purported beatings of demonstrators by military forces during another rally in the city of Alexandria.

The army quickly issued a statement denying the use of violence against protesters and accusing activists of trying to divide the country. "The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces urges the public to exercise caution and not to be drawn into this suspicious plot that aims to undermine Egypt's stability," the statement said in unusually strong language.

The head of the council, Field Marshal Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, tried to soften the tone in an address later Saturday on state TV. He called the youth activists "a great product of Egyptian soil, who belong to an ancient people, adopted noble principles, confirmed their nationalistic sense and realized their responsibility as Egypt's youth to progress and make history."

He also appealed for national unity.

"Holding together our internal front and keeping it strong is a national necessity, so we can face the challenges and difficulties in the nation's path, to realize where we are going and how to move toward a safe and secure future," Tantawi said.

His remarks, which were made during a speech commemorating the anniversary of the 1952 military coup that toppled Egypt's monarchy, came hours ahead of another planned rally outside the council's headquarters to demand speedier trials for ex-regime officials, the end of military trials for civilians, the resignation of the state prosecutor and a set date for the transition to civilian rule.

Thousands marched from Tahrir Square toward the ministry of Defense, across town, chanting against the council's delay in implementing their demands.

The military council has promised to hand over power to an elected civilian government within six months. Parliamentary elections are now set for October or November, followed by presidential elections, likely next year.

Activists frustrated with the slow pace of change have continued to protest, forcing a change to the interim government and a change in the leadership of the police force. A few hundred have been camped out in Tahrir Square since earlier this month to pressure the military to bring those accused of killing the protesters during the 18-day uprising to trial.

So far, only one low-ranking policeman has been charged in absentia for killing protesters. Nearly 900 were killed in the early days of the uprising.

In an unsually strongly worded statement released on its Facebook page, the council statement accused activists of seeking to drive a wedge between the people and the military. It singled out the April 6 movement, one of the largest groups behind the protests that forced Mubarak to step down on Feb. 11.

Activists quickly rebuffed the statement with one of their own, saying the army rejects all criticism of how it is ruling the country.

Mohammed Adel, an April 6 spokesman, said "defaming" the group is reminiscent of the language used by the previous regime against its opponents. "It is the army that is driving a wedge between it and the people by accusing others of treason," he said.

Protesters in Alexandria insisted the military used force against them at Friday's demonstration.

Nour al-Zorba, a protester, said they were first attacked by men wielding knives. Protesters chased those attackers away, but then soldiers began chasing them, detaining some and beating others to the ground, he said.

A few protesters managed to enter the military headquarters and tried to speak to the site's commander.

One woman, Amira Nabil, who went inside the headquarters said she was beaten and dragged by her feet, and punched in the stomach.


[link to www.guardian.co.uk]
Anonymous Coward
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07/23/2011 02:40 PM
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Re: BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo
Scuffles?
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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07/23/2011 02:42 PM
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Re: BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo
Scuffles?
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 3616


crashes about, jangles, rumbles, geeting very mad, turn into riot
Anonymous Coward (OP)
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07/23/2011 03:55 PM
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Re: BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo
More than 150 wounded in clashes over Egypt military’s handling of transition

More than 150 people were wounded in Egypt’s capital Cairo on Saturday during clashes between protesters angry at the ruling military council’s handling of the transition period and army loyalists, according to Egypt’s state TV.

About 1,000 protesters marched from Tahrir Square in central Cairo towards the defense ministry, the headquarters of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, but were blocked by residents of the Al Abbasya neighborhood and military loyalists.

The two sides pelted each other with stones and Molotov cocktails, prompting the army to fire in air to disperse the crowds.

“Down with the military,” the protesters chanted, branding its leader Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi “an agent of America.”

Ambulances were seen tending to the injured, as an army helicopter flew overhead shining its spotlight into the crowd.

Mr. Tantawi vowed on Saturday to build “the pillars of a democratic state which promotes freedom and the rights of citizens.”

Mr. Tantawi, whose military council took over after a popular uprising forced President Hosni Mubarak to step down in February, was seen leaving the compound before the protesters arrived.

Egyptian youth protesters vowed to remain in Tahrir Square until their demands are met, after violence broke out in a number of Egyptian cities between military police and protesters on Friday, in which up to 10 people and four policemen were hurt.

The army denied using force against demonstrators.

Protesters now in their 15th day of demonstrations have been camped in Tahrir and other squares across the country to back demands for more freedom for the civilian government, led by Essam Sharaf, an end to military trials and setting a timeframe for the completion of the demands for reform.

In his speech to mark the anniversary of the 1952 revolution which overthrew King Farouk in a bloodless coup, Mr. Tantawi said his mandate was to deliver an elected government to Egypt.

“We are committed to pressing ahead in turning Egypt to a modern civilian state,” Mr. Tantawi said in his speech.

“We are moving forward on the path to entrenching democracy that upholds freedoms and the rights of citizens through free and fair elections,” he added in a pre-recorded speech, his first address to the public since Mubarak was ousted.


[link to english.alarabiya.net]
bigT3ddy

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07/24/2011 06:28 AM

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Re: BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo
bump
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07/24/2011 12:22 PM
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Re: BRKG Scuffles break out at Egypt protest in Cairo
Egypt after Mubarak: Slow pace of reform fuels anger

After weeks of mainly peaceful protests, Egypt's post-revolution crisis is entering a more violent phase of confrontations.

For two days running, demonstrators have marched from Tahrir Square to the headquarters of Egypt's military rulers, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, at the defence ministry.

There have also been angry confrontations in the second city of Alexandria and in the canal city of Suez.

Witnesses estimate that as many as 20,000 people joined the Cairo march on Saturday. By moving on the defence ministry they were challenging an unspoken "red line".

Even during the revolution in January and February there were only a few protests outside the defence ministry and the nearby presidential compound.

The protesters are angry over the slow pace of change, the continued use of military tribunals to try civilians and what they see as a reluctance to bring former regime officials to trial.

The increasingly aggressive response to their demonstrations just compounds their fury.

To protect the defence ministry the military blocked the road with vehicles and barbed wire.

But witnesses said the violence came initially from men in plain clothes who threw rocks and petrol bombs at the protesters and ran in from side streets armed with knives and clubs.

As the situation escalated, the army fired teargas into the crowd.

Gunfire was also heard, though it is believed to have been soldiers firing blanks in the air.

In a statement after the first march on the defence ministry on Friday, the ruling military council praised local people for forming a human shield to keep protesters away from the military headquarters.

But the opposition believe the military has revived the strategy of former President Hosni Mubarak's regime, sending out plain-clothes thugs to attack demonstrators, then denying responsibility.

The military council have always insisted they will not attack peaceful protests.

The army in Egypt enjoy a good deal of public support and trust, enhanced by their decision not to open fire during the revolution that unseated Mr Mubarak.

They also know that many Egyptians are weary of the continuing protests that block traffic in the centre of Cairo and other cities, and are blamed by some for harming the economy and preventing the country getting back to normal.


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[link to www.bbc.co.uk]

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