At least 44 killed across Egypt as army cracks down on Morsi supporters
Two security force members killed during clear-out operation according to state news agency; Health Ministry confirms at least 44 protesters have died as protests spread from Cairo across to Fayoum, Suez.
Violent clashes between supporters of deposed Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi and the military that ousted him spread across the country Wednesday, after dozens were killed in a push to remove protesters from a central Cairo mosque.
Egyptian security forces killed at least 30 people on Wednesday when they cleared a camp of Cairo protesters who were demanding the reinstatement of deposed President Mohamed Morsi, his Muslim Brotherhood movement said.
The Health Ministry said 13 people were killed near theRabaa al-Adawiya mosqueduring the crackdown, including five police and eight civilians. The official death toll could well rise.
At least five people were killed on Wednesday in the Egyptian city of Suez, a health ministry official said, when supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsi tried to storm a government building there.
Witnesses said an armored vehicle was set on fire during the attempt to storm the provincial governor’s office.
At least a further nine people were killed on Wednesday in the Egyptian province of Fayoum, south of Cairo, a hospital official said, following fighting at police stations between supporters of Morsi and the security forces.
Morsi supporters attacked at least two police stations in Fayoum, setting fire to police vehicles outside one, witnesses said. There were also clashes outside the provincial governor’s offices.
A second camp near Cairo University was swiftly cleared in the early morning.
Gunfire rang out as protesters ran away from Rabaa, and clouds of black smoke rose above the sites. Armored vehicles moved in alongside bulldozers which began clearing away tents, and one witness said he saw 15 bodies at a field hospital.
“It is nasty inside, they are destroying our tents. We can’t breath inside and many people are in hospital,” Murad Ahmed said at the edge of the sprawling camp, where Muslim Brotherhood guards had positioned sandbags in anticipation of a police raid.
Live television footage showed medics wearing gas masks and swimming goggles as they treated the wounded.
Two members of the Egyptian security forces were shot dead as they tried to disperse protesters, the state news agency reported.
The operation, which began at around 7 a.m., came after international efforts failed to mediate an end to a six-week political standoff between Morsi’s supporters and the army-backed government which took power after his ouster on July 3.
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