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Violence in Egypt continues, causes more injuries

11-24-2011 13:45 BJT

BEIJING, Nov. 24 (Xinhua) -- Despite an offer by the ruling military council to speed up the transfer of power, the violence in Egypt continued into its sixth night since its eruption last weekend, causing hundreds of injuries.

Egyptian protestors shout slogans during a clash with security forces near Tahrir Square in
Cairo, Egypt, Nov. 23, 2011. Fresh violence erupted Wednesday between protestors and police
near Cairo's iconic Tahrir Square, despite an offer by the ruling military council to speed
up the power transfer. (Xinhua/Nasser Nouri)

On Wednesday evening, the iconic Tahrir Square in downtown Cairo, where the Interior Ministry building is located and the scene of the turmoil earlier this year which toppled Egypt's ex-President Hosni Mubarak, was filled with thousands of demonstrators. Nothing had changed in the last few days.

During the day, policemen fired tear gas into the rock-throwing crowds of protesters in the Mohamed Mahmoud Street near Tahrir Square, and three armored vehicles, deployed by the army, were trying to curb the clashes.

On Wednesday alone, 290 were injured, according to the country's health ministry. A total of over 2,000 have by now been wounded since the renewed outbreak of violence in Egypt.

Troops and policemen Wednesday arrested a group of 20 gunmen who attacked both the security forces and protesters near Tahrir Square, Egypt's official MENA news agency reported. Some weapons were seized, and officials said the arrests showed there were people who intended to create chaos.

Egyptian protestors block the road to the Interior Ministry during a clash with security
forces near Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, Nov. 23, 2011. Fresh violence erupted Wednesday
between protestors and police near Cairo's iconic Tahrir Square, despite an offer by the
ruling military council to speed up the power transfer. (Xinhua/Nasser Nouri)

The death toll from the latest round of clashes across Egypt has risen to 35, according to the health ministry.

The deaths included 31 in the capital Cairo, two in the second largest city Alexandria, one in Ismailia in northeastern Egypt and another in Marsa Matrouh in the northwest, it said.

Some youth groups, including the April 6 Movement and the Revolution Youth Coalition, insisted on continuing the protests. They demanded the departure of Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, head of the current ruling military council.

But the military chief said in his televised address to the nation on Tuesday that the military does not expect to stay in power and that the military "is ready to hand over power immediately (through a referendum) if the people wish so."

He said the date of the presidential elections is six months earlier than originally planned by the army.


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