Middle East

Anti-military protests continue in Egypt

Protesters arrested during marches across the country as prosecutors extend former President Mohamed Morsi's detention.

Last Modified: 13 Sep 2013 21:17
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One person has died and 12 others including four policemen were injured when gunshots were fired as clashes erupted during protests in the Egyptian port city of Alexandria.

Eighteen anti-coup protesters were also arrested in Alexandria and a further 11 in Mahalla city as supporters and opponents of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi clashed on Friday.

Thousands of people protesting against military rule took to the streets across the country in rallies dubbed "Loyalty to the Martyrs' Blood", calling for Morsi to be reinstated.

In the industrial city of Mahalla, officials said riot police fired tear gas to disperse a demonstration near a police station.

Several television crews also reportedly came under attack by Morsi supporters.

The rallies come nearly a month after the August 14 crackdown by security forces on two pro-Morsi protest camps in Cairo that led to clashes in which hundreds of people were killed.

"Either we recover their rights, or we die like them," protesters chanted of those who lost their lives in the crackdown, as they marched on Friday towards Rabaa al-Adawiya Square, the site of one of those camps.

The Anti-Coup Alliance was calling for more rallies on Saturday to mark the one month anniversary of events in Rabaa.

Society divided

For weeks, demonstrators have been marching in cities around the country.

Follow our ongoing coverage of the political crisis in Egypt

In Cairo, a local resident of Nasr City told Al Jazeera that people want the rallies to end, as they are disrupting lives of the locals and limiting their movements.

“Every Friday, things are stopped. People and shops are afraid, shops are closed," he said. 

"They are afraid they might be attacked and if I have an errand far away, I can’t really go anywhere."

But some protesters insisted they had managed to garner local support.

"After what people have seen in Rabaa, the killing and the burning. I don’t believe they are upset," a demonstrator told Al Jazeera.

Morsi detention extended

Meanwhile, prosecutors extended the detention of Morsi for 30 days. The former president faces several criminal charges, including murder.

Al Jazeera’s correspondent said the government appeared to think it has wide support, with Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood on the back-foot and the protests losing speed.

“If they were to bring Morsi to a swift trial now or soon, it might bring more protesters out onto the streets... So I think they’re quite happy with the situation as it is at the moment”, he said.

Morsi was ousted by the army after a wave of popular protests. Egypt's military-installed new authorities have since arrested more than 2,000 of his supporters.

On Thursday, the interim authorities extended a state of emergency in force since the mid-August bloodshed by another two months because of Egypt's continued security problems.


Al Jazeera and agencies
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