Κυριακή, 10 Απριλίου 2011

2 Protesters Are Killed in Cairo’s Tahrir Square


2 Protesters Are Killed in Cairo’s Tahrir Square

Khaled Desouki/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
Tahrir Square on Saturday, hours after several thousand riot police, uniformed soldiers and military police officers stormed it.
CAIRO — Egypt’s security forces shot and killed at least two protesters and injured dozens more in a predawn attempt Saturday to disperse peaceful demonstrators spending the night in the capital’s iconic Tahrir Square, according to government security officials and witnesses. The crackdown was the most brutal since the overthrow of former President Hosni Mubarak on Feb. 11 and since the military started running the country. The military on Saturday denied that anyone had been killed and described the protesters in the square as “thugs.” It also appeared to be trying to distance itself from the violence, saying the forces in the square were police officers under the control of the Interior Ministry. But the army’s recounting of the events was contrary even to a report from the Ministry of Health, which reported that one person had died.
The violence is likely to pose new challenges for the military, which has faced increased anger from civilians after widespread allegations that it has tortured protesters in recent weeks and that it is moving too slowly to replace holdovers from Mr. Mubarak’s authoritarian rule. On Saturday, the ruling military council did not back down, saying it would clear remaining protesters from the square with "firmness and force" to allow life to return to normal, Reuters reported. A senior military officer earlier in the day blamed the trouble at the square on people sent there by those loyal to Mr. Mubarak.

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