Second anniversary of Egypt's revolution sees violence between protesters and security forces in Cairo and many other governorates; at least nine protesters dead in Suez.
Ahram Online concludes its live-update coverage of the intense demonstrations and clashes on the Egyptian
revolution's second anniversary. Below are the day's highlights.
01:20 In more tweets, president Morsi said: "the ugly violence aims at tainting the civilized nature of Egypt's revolution."
"Egypt's [security] apparatuses will chase the criminals and bring them to justice."
"Egypt's [security] apparatuses are also doing their best to protect and secure the peaceful demonstrations."
"I call on all citizens to hold onto the noble principles of the Egyptian revolution to peacefully and freely express their views."
01:17 Egypt President Mohamed Morsi offers his condolences to the victims of Friday's clashes via his Twitter account.
01:10 The death toll in the Canal city of Suez has risen to seven while over 60 were injured, according to Ahram Online’s correspondent. The deceased are: Mostafa Mahmoud Eid (17), Walid El-Sayed Hussein (30), Mohamed Gharib (16), Ali Soliman (19), Mohamed Mahmoud (15), Hussein Mahmoud (36), and Mahmoud Ashour (age unknown).
00:40 The official Twitter account of Egypt President Mohamed Morsi says he will be sending “short messages” within few minutes.
00:30 Nasser Al-Yamany, a 23-year-old man, was killed in coastal city Ismailia after being shot in the back, Al-Ahram’s news website reported, bringing the death toll to seven in the ongoing clashes.
00:10 Osama Ismail, an interior ministry spokesman, told Orbit TV that 94 policemen were injured across the nation in the ongoing clashes. He also said protesters are persistently trying to storm the state radio and television building in downtown Cairo.
“They are throwing Molotov cocktails on the building, and are attempting to storm it,” he added.
23:40 The tax office building in the Delta city of Damanhour has been raided by hundreds, who have stolen its furniture and electronic equipment amid complete absence of security, reported Al-Ahram Arabic news website.
Eyewitness Ahmed Milad told Al-Ahram that things have slipped out of control in Damanhour, saying that all the protests had ended by 5pm on Friday and “what is going on right now is mere vandalism and has nothing to do with the protests."
Earlier, two Freedom and Justice Party offices were reportedly raided in Damanhour.
23:30 CORRECTION: The National Salvation Front, which had earlier announced its intention to hold a sit-in, released a press statement listing the sit-in’s demands:
1- Appointing a national salvation government.
2- Annulling the “flawed” constitution.
3-Annulling the new elections law.
4- Calling for national reconciliation with the opposition without any pre-conditions.
23:20 A high-ranking police officer in Suez, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Ahram Online that two members of the Central Security Forces had been killed in the city.
“The policemen are furious at the death of their colleagues. The officers are trying to control their anger,” he added.
22:50 Clashes seem to have escalated at Maspero (ten minutes by foot away from Tahrir) between civilians and security forces in front of the state-run TV building, according to footage being broadcast on television.
22:40 Hundreds of protesters raided the headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party in the Nile Delta city of Damanhour, making it the second headquarters attacked there today.
According to Al-Ahram Arabic news website, the clashes at the Freedom and Justice Party’s headquarters have left over 19 injured.
Meanwhile, opposition umbrella group the National Salvation Front has announced in a statement that its member parties and groups will not leave the streets on Friday, indicating that the group intends to hold a sit-in.
The co-founder of youth opposition group 6 April told Al-Ahram Arabic that political forces are working on drafting a list of unified demands that will be issued within hours.
22:30 At least six people have been pronounced dead in the city of Suez, as violence erupted on the Egyptian revolution's second anniversary.
Ahram Online's correspondent obtained the names of three of the deceased: 17-year-old Mostafa Mahmoud Eissa, whose body has already been taken to morgue, Mohamed Mohamed Gharib, also 17, and 26-year-old Mohsen Hussein.
Suez, which has witnessed some of the fiercest confrontations over the past couple of years, saw clashes on Friday in the vicinity of the governorate headquarters, with protesters and police throwing stones at each other, and some protesters hurling Molotov cocktails at security forces.
The building was eventually set on fire.
Meanwhile, the injury toll has exceeded 250 in nine governorates in Cairo, Alexandria, Beheira, Luxor, Kafr El-Sheikh, Ismailia, Gharbia, Sharqiya, and Suez, according to the health ministry.
22:15 Ahram Online's Bel Trew sends us this update from Tahrir.
"We initially thought the street battles had halted but suddenly the Central Security Forces, stationed behind the Sheikh Rihan wall, fired a continuous volley of teargas at protesters on the other side. Plumes of toxic gas swept across Tahrir, pushing protesters back towards the museum, clearing three-quarters of the square. Ambulances stationed by the Qasr Al-Dobara church swiftly shifted their medical stations to Simon Bolivor Square as it became impossible to breathe. Protesters fleeing to Omar Makrum mosque responded with a few Molotov cocktails, but weren't able to close enough to the security forces for them to do any damage. CSF soldiers briefly emerged from behind the wall, but it appears that they have returned to their posts. Demonstrators, meanwhile, lit fires around the square to counter the gas."
22:10 The spokesman for the armed forces stated via his official Facebook page that one soldier from the Central Security Forces (CSF) was injured in the clashes and is currently being transferred to Maadi military hospital.
22:05 According to a statement released by the health ministry to state-run news agency MENA, the injury toll has reached 252, with the injuries taking place in Cairo, Alexandria, Beheira, Luxor, Kafr El-Sheikh, Ismailia, Gharbia, Sharqiya, and Suez.
Ahmed Omar, the official spokesman of the ministry, also said that the Egyptian Ambulance Organisation stated that no deaths were confirmed, despite several reports claiming a handful of civilians were killed.
22:00 Two female reporters for Sky News Arabia and Al-Nahar satellite channels have been injured in the ongoing clashes in Alexandria, reports Al-Ahram Arabic .
Tension was heightened at the clashes when electricity was cut off.
21:50 Back to Tahrir, where Ahram Online’s Bel Trew reports that a huge amount of teargas has pushed protesters back across the square, running away from Sheikh Rihan Street and away from the gas. A protester reponds to the volley with a Molotov cocktail.
21:45 BREAKING:Al-Ahram Arabic reports that five protesters were killed in the Suez clashes at the city’s governorate headquarters after sustaining live ammunition and birdshot injuries, according to the head of the doctors syndicate in Suez, Mohamed Salama.
Salama said that there are dozens of injuries among the protesters, included many serious ones to the face and chest. The reports have not been officially confirmed.
21:35 After a bit of a lull in the action, Ahram Online’s Bel Trew reports that clashes have started again at Sheikh Rihan Street next to Tahrir Square. Protesters standing by the barrier wall are are running onto Qasr El-Aini Street after police shot missiles, which look like teargas canisters although this is unconfirmed.
21:10 In the Delta city of Mahalla, the clashes continue, with protesters setting the governor’s office on fire by throwing Molotov cocktails at the building, reports Al-Ahram’s Arabic news website.
21:05 Eight protesters and two policemen were injured during violent clashes in the city of Tanta around the vicinity of the city’s security directorate, reported Al-Ahram Arabic.
21:00 The prosecutor-general has ordered an investigation into the violent incidents that occurred during Friday’s protests, reports state television.
20:55 Two police officers and four soldiers have been injured by birdshot pellets in clashes with protesters in front of the presidential palace, a security source tells Al-Ahram Arabic news portal.
20:55 The governorate headquarters in Suez is shown to have been set on fire in live footage on private satellite channel OnTV. The channel also reports that there are violent clashes between protesters and police forces around the perimeter of the building.
Meanwhile in Upper Egypt, violent clashes with rocks and Molotov cocktails have erupted between Brotherhood members and protesters in front of the Muslim Brotherhood headquarters in the city of Minya.
Police fired tear gas to disperse the crowds, adding to the injuries in both camps. No reports on the number of injuries as yet.
20:50 Tahrir Doctors, a doctors organisation which treats injured protesters, has issued an alert urging police forces to refrain from firing tear gas, as the amount of gas in the air has reached a “dangerous level” and could result in deaths by suffocation.
The group warned that some protesters who have suffered ill effects from the tear gas are dealing having serious breathing problems, and held the interior ministry responsible for their possible death.
According to the statement, issued on their social media accounts, clouds of tear gas have completely covered Sheikh Rihan Street off the square, as well as the areas around Omar Makram mosque and Qasr El-Dobara church, which is being used as a field hospital to treat injured protesters.
20:40 Ahram Online's Bel Trew is reporting on her Twitter account that sexual assaults are still happening in Tahrir.
Mob sex attacks still happening on #tahrir say eye-witnesses.Women stripped, crying, beaten.This feels like the worst night of these attacks.
20:30 Ahram Online’s Osman El-Sharnoubi is at Maspero; he reports that the crowds are starting to disperse from around the building, due to tear gas.
20:20 Many of the main streets leading into and out of downtown Cairo have been blocked off by protesters, leaving traffic unable to pass.
20:15 Hundreds of protesters blocked the downtown Cairo metro station Sadat for about half an hour. Metro activity was briefly suspended.
20:10 Ahram Online's Osman El-Sharnoubi says traffic on Cairo’s Sixth October Bridge is completely stalled as protesters placed barricades on both sides, forcing vehicles to turn around and drive on the wrong side of the road to get off the bridge. Meanwhile, hundreds of protesters marched towards the state television building Maspero (10 minutes by foot from Tahrir) on the same bridge, while chanting against the incumbent regime and the Muslim Brotherhood.
Many marchers are talking about the teargas the police have been repeatedly using to disperse the crowds today. Mohamed Shabaan from the Egyptian Current told Ahram Online: "It's the first time we have experienced this type of gas; it's barely visible."
Meanwhile, hundreds of protesters are chanting against Morsi and the Brotherhood in front of the state television building in Maspero, while police forces try to disperse them with teargas.
20:05 State television reports that in Port Said, families of dozens of hardcore fans of Masry football club, the Ultras Masry, who have been detained pending trial in relation to the Port Said killings in February last year, will stage a sit-in in front of the prison facility where their relatives are held, prior to the verdict in the case which is expected on Saturday morning.
Families of the accused in Port Said have participated in Friday’s demonstrations, demanding justice for their relatives, accused of murdering 72 Ahly football club fans last February. The event was considered Egypt’s worst-ever case of football violence.
20:00 Clashes are still going back and forth in the canal city of Suez near the governorate headquarters, with protesters and police throwing stones at each other. Central Security Forces also use teargas to disperse the crowd as some civilians hurl Molotov cocktails at them, according to Egypt’s state TV.