Renewed Clashes Grip Cairo, Protester Killed

Posted November 26th, 2011 at 5:35 am (UTC-5)
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Protesters in Cairo's iconic Tahrir Square are again battling with Egyptian security forces with deadly results.

The latest clashes broke out Saturday morning, as frustrated Egyptians chanted and pelted security forces with stones. Riot police responded by firing tear gas to break up the crowds.

At least one person was killed when protesters who broke off from the main group clashed with police outside the Cabinet building.

Officials say at least another three injured in the latest skirmishes, which followed violence Friday night in the Egyptian coastal city of Alexandria.

Tear gas canisters clouded Alexandria's dark streets as thousands of protesters clashed with security forces. Many of the protesters threw rocks and stones at riot police guarding the city's main security building before being chased away by police in armored trucks.

Meanwhile, in Cairo, thousands of demonstrators took to the streets urging support for the police and military.

The late night rallies followed a massive protest in the capital earlier Friday, when tens of thousands of demonstrators packed Tahrir Square to demand an immediate end to military rule.

Many of the protesters also criticized the military ruling council's appointment of an official who served under former president Hosni Mubarak as the country new prime minister.

Kamal el-Ganzouri said Friday he would not be able to form a new Cabinet before Monday's parliamentary elections. The vote is the first since Mr. Mubarak was forced from power.

Egyptian authorities announced that voting will take place over two days, instead of one day. Reuters news agency quotes an Interior Ministry official as saying the change is designed to ease concerns about overcrowding and security issues.

At least 42 people have been killed in protest-related clashes across the country.

Some protesters touted Friday's so-called “million-man” rally in Tahrir Square as the “last chance” for the military council to quit. Many vowed to stay in the square until their demands are met.

Both the U.S. and the European Union on Friday urged Egypt to speed up the transition to civilian government.

Also Friday, three American students arrested during a protest in Egypt were released and were preparing to fly home.

Derrick Sweeney, Luke Gates and Gregory Porter attended American University in Cairo and were arrested Sunday on the roof of a building near Tahrir Square. Officials accused them of throwing firebombs at security forces who were fighting protesters.