Cairo protest Morsi supporters, opponents use Molotov cocktails
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Published on Dec 5, 2012
Clashes between supporters and opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi have taken an explosive turn as the rival parties hurl petrol bombs at each other outside the presidential palace in Cairo, reports Al Arabiya.
Earlier on Wednesday, the Muslim Brotherhood called for a rally backing President Morsi, while leftists planned a counter-protest. Initial reports from the square in front of the presidential palace suggested that demonstrators were clashing with police. Now it appears the violence flared up after a thousand-strong pro-Morsi column marched into the square where the president's opponents were staging a sit-in and attempted to "cleanse the place."
The two groups attacked each other with stones and sticks and eventually the opposition group was forced to leave the area, reports Ahram Online daily.
Muslim Brotherhood supporters destroyed the opposition's tent camp, injuring several. They also claim they had been shot at during the clashes.
Security Forces appeared on the scene two hours into the clashes, say local media. Police had to form human barriers to separate the warring sides.
Sporadic scuffles in Tahrir Square were also reported.
The violence broke out shortly after President Morsi returned to the palace. Despite the recent developments, Morsi and his office insist the constitutional referendum will proceed as planned on December 15. Egyptian Vice President Mahmoud Mekky said that "the door is open" to amend the disputed articles of the Constitution ahead of the referendum.
"There must be consensus," Mekky said, expecting a dialogue to begin soon with the opposition to end the crisis.
"The demands of opposition protesters must be respected," he noted, adding "I am completely confident that if not in the coming hours, in the next few days we will reach a breakthrough in the crisis and consensus."
Opposition groups have reportedly turned down Mekky's suggestion and insist on retracting Morsi's recent declaration.
On Tuesday, Morsi was forced to flee his residence after violent clashes broke out between demonstrators and police. Around 10,000 demonstrators gathered near Morsi's palace in Cairo to protest his decree granting his office vastly expanded powers, and a draft constitution that was quickly adopted by his allies.
The demonstrators dubbed their siege "the last warning" demanding the decrees be cancelled.
Violence on Tuesday saw 18 people injured, with police firing tear gas to stop the crowds from assaulting Morsi's residence. Hundreds of anti-Morsi demonstrators then moved to Cairo's iconic Tahrir Square to spend the night in a tent encampment erected almost two weeks ago.
Каир протеста Morsi сторонники, оппоненты используют бутылки с зажигательной смесью
Partidários de protesto Cairo Morsi, oponentes usam coquetéis molotov
Il Cairo protesta sostenitori Morsi, avversari utilizzare molotov
카이로 시위 Morsi의 지지자들은, 상대는 Molotov 칵테일을 사용하여
القاهرة احتجاجا أنصار مرسي المعارضين استخدام قنابل المولوتوف
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