Riot Police Fail to Contain Fighting as Egypt’s Capital Comes Unglued

At Least Seven Killed, Several Hundred Wounded in Battles Over President

by Jason Ditz, December 06, 2012

Two days of protests and clashes over Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi have gone from bad to worse today, as supporters of the president attempted to tear down the tents of some protesters staging a sit-in and the area around the presidential palace erupted in massive violence.

More opponents of President Morsi arrived at the scene of the clashes and threw firebombs at the president’s supporters, who responded by throwing rocks. Crowds grew throughout the day on both sides and well into the evening, with at least seven confirmed killed and many hundreds of others wounded.

Hundreds of riot police attempted to drive the throngs of demonstrators away from one another and the presidential palace, but appear to have done little as the Army has now been called in to seal off the palace

Even this doesn’t appear to have driven protesters on either side off, as both sides reportedly dig in for a long siege. How long it can even theoretically last is unclear, however, as one of the prime movers of the demonstrations, the constitutional referendum, is scheduled for December 15, and it may be difficult to sustain huge levels of anger after the vote.

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