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Army forcibly disperses Tahrir protest, Reuters reports 2 dead
Published in Almasry Alyoum on 09 - 04 - 2011

In the early hours of Saturday, military police forcibly dispersed protesters who remained in Tahrir Square after Friday's mass demonstration, in which hundreds of thousands of Egyptians participated to demand the prosecution of figures from the toppled regime.
Shots were intensively fired in the air to break up the sit-in, forcing the protesters to flee into nearby streets.
Reuters reports sources from a Cairo hospital as saying two men died from bullet wounds in the skirmish, and 15 were injured, although the army denies using live ammunition.
Eyewitnesses, meanwhile, said the military arrested several army officers who joined the protesters to express solidarity with the demands of the revolution. Protesters had formed a human cordon to protect the alleged officers within their tent camp.
On Friday afternoon, an official source said investigations are being carried out to determine whether those in army uniform genuinely belong to the military. The alleged officers were seen among the protesters severely criticizing the performance of the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF).
Meanwhile, in its 34th message on Facebook, the SCAF said that it ordered the arrest of several members of the formerly-ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) who were alleged to be behind incidents of thuggery that took place on Friday during the mass protest in Tahrir.
The message said the SCAF ordered the arrest of Ibrahim Kamel and other members of the NDP for their involvement.
It added the SCAF also ordered the arrest of three assistants to Kamel, one of the most influential businessmen with NDP membership and the main suspect in the “camel battle”, an incident of violence against protesters in Tahrir which took place on 2 February.
The SCAF vowed to go after all the vestiges of the NDP, adding that it will always work for the stability and security of Egypt and the ambitions of its people.
Several Facebook users who commented on the statement were surprised by its phrasing, as Kamel was for the first time described as one of the “vestiges of the former regime and the NDP”. The message was released at an early hour of the day .
It garnered 1500 comments within an hour of its release. Many were critical, particularly as the military forcibly broke up the protest in Tahrir only an hour before, according to eyewitnesses. Videos show large numbers of State Security -- who have not been seen in Tahrir since the violence of 28 February -- helping disperse protesters.
After troops withdrew, protesters armed with makeshift weapons reoccupied the square, now covered in broken glass, stones and blood.


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