Egyptian security forces sweep Morsi supporter camps in bloody battle amid gunfire, tear gas
Egyptian police in riot gear swept in with armoured vehicles and bulldozers Wednesday to clear two sprawling encampments of supporters of the country’s ousted Islamist president in Cairo, showering protesters with tear gas as the sound of gunfire rang out. At least 15 people were killed.
Smoke clogged the sky and fires smouldered on the streets, which were lined with charred poles and tarps after several tents were burned. The smaller camp was cleared relatively quickly, but clashes were ongoing at the main site near a mosque that has served as the epicenter of the pro-Morsi campaign.
The assault came after days of warnings by the military-backed interim administration that replaced President Mohammed Morsi after he was ousted in a July 3 coup. The two sit-in camps at two major intersections on opposite sides of the Egyptian capital began in late June to show support for Morsi. Aftre the coup, protesters there have demanded his reinstatement. (Photos: AP Photo/Ahmed Gomaa; Mohammed Abdel Moneim / AFP / Getty Images; AP Photo / Hassan Ammar)
Violent protests erupt in Tahrir Square as Mohammed Morsi’s decree threatens new turmoil at heart of Arab Spring
Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi’s decree that put his decisions above legal challenge until a new parliament was elected caused fury amongst his opponents on Friday who accused him of being the new Hosni Mubarak and hijacking the revolution.
Police fired tear gas in a street leading to Cairo’s Tahrir Square, heart of the 2011 anti-Mubarak uprising, where thousands demanded Mursi quit and accused him of launching a “coup”. There were violent protests in Alexandria, Port Said and Suez.
“The people want to bring down the regime,” shouted protesters in Tahrir, echoing a chant used in the uprising that forced Mubarak to step down. “Get out, Mursi,” they chanted. (Reuters; AP Photos)