Thursday, July 25, 2013

Morsi supporters attack Tahrir Sq. with firearms


Pro and anti-Mursi protesters clash near Cairo's Tahrir square

CAIRO (Reuters) - Supporters and opponents of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi clashed in central Cairo on Monday, hurling stones at each other as security forces fired tear gas to try to disperse them, witnesses said.

State television said one person was killed and seven injured in the worst violence in the Egyptian capital since July 16, when seven died in confrontations.

Blood stains and broken glass littered the pavement between the dueling sides, and injured people were whisked away from the clashes on motorbikes.

State television said they had arrested seven Mursi supporters and confiscated two guns from them. A Reuters correspondent also saw two anti-Mursi activists holding homemade pistols, with the two sides shooting fireworks at each other.

A few hundred protesters backing Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood movement appeared to be trying to march on Tahrir Square, the epicenter of mass demonstrations which led Egypt's army to oust the elected Islamist leader on July 3.

"They fired on us with birdshot and pistols. They tried to overrun the square." said Tarik Sabir, 41, an employee in a petrol company, who was wounded in the thigh by birdshot.

Around 100 people have been killed in violence since the downfall of Mursi earlier this month -- most of them Muslim Brotherhood supporters.

Monday's clashes were the latest instance of violence in and around Tahrir square, a focal point for demonstrations since mass protests there led to the downfall of veteran autocrat Hosni Mubarak in February 2011.

*(Reporting By Tom Finn and Ali Abdelaty; Writing by Noah Browning; editing by Crispian Balmer)

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