Friday, October 4, 2013

Clashes erupt at pro-Morsi demonstrations in Egypt

Clashes have erupted between supporters of Egypt's ousted President Mohammed Morsi, opponents and security forces in the capital, Cairo, and Alexandria. There has been heavy gunfire and explosions in the city centre. State TV reported further clashes in the northern Sharqiya district and to the east in Giza, as well as in the northern port city of Alexandria. Hundreds have been killed since the military deposed Mr Morsi in July. Our correspondent says the protesters in the capital's Agouza district were chanting "Rabaa, Rabaa", a reference to the square next the Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque where a sit-in was cleared by force in August. Thousands of members of the Muslim Brotherhood have also been detained in the past two months. Several senior figures, including Mr Morsi and the movement's general guide Mohammed Badie, are being held on charges such as incitement to violence and murder. The authorities portray the crackdown as a struggle against "terrorism". Before Friday's clashes, soldiers and police had tightened security around key sites in Cairo, including Tahrir Square, the focus of the mass protests against Mr Morsi and his predecessor, Hosni Mubarak. Morsi supporters said they would be intensifying their demonstrations in the lead-up to Sunday's 40th anniversary of the 1973 Arab-Israeli war.

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