Deadly Violence Returns to Egypt Streets

   < < Go Back
from The Wall Street Journal,

More Than 30 Killed in Ramses Square in Central Cairo.

Demonstrations erupted outside mosques in Cairo and other cities across Egypt on Friday, with thousands of Muslim Brotherhood members expressing rage against the military-backed government and the bloody crackdown earlier in the week.

Dozens of marches taking place around the capital city were a catalyst for more conflict between protesters and Egypt’s security forces, which were issued live ammunition and are under orders to protect the nation and government buildings from what the military-led government call “terrorist” acts.

By late afternoon, the death toll was mounting—although the bloodshed was less severe than the killings earlier in the week. At Ramses Square in the center of Cairo, at least 31 protesters had been killed, their bodies piling up on the green-carpeted floor of the nearby Al Fatah Mosque. They appeared to have died from gunshot wounds.

The Brotherhood’s ability to re-establish a sustained protest camp—a stated goal of its leaders—will give further clues about the group’s strength and resilience after suffering multiple blows since last month, when the army, backed by secular politicians, deposed President Mohammed Morsi , imprisoned senior leaders of the movement and then this week moved against their two protest camps on Wednesday. The death toll from that crackdown has surpassed 600 people, according to official figures.

By the end of noon prayers, the large numbers of pro-Morsi supporters who were taking to the streets in Cairo indicated that the group hadn’t been cowed. Whether the group could ultimately fulfill its stated goal of converging these streams of protesters in Ramses Square remained to be seen.

Read More (subscription required):