Clashes broke out in Cairo and several other Egyptian cities on Friday during protest marches staged by supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood, security sources and state media said.
In the capital, backers of Morsi, who was ousted by the military in July, clashed with opponents and riot police on the road that leads to the pyramids in the suburb of Giza.
An Egyptian army vehicle fired live rounds in the direction of Muslim Brotherhood supporters who had been pushed away from Cairo's Tahrir Square by security forces, a Reuters witness said. Medical sources said one Brotherhood supporter had died from a gunshot wound in clashes in the center of the capital.
“We will go protest and take all streets possible,” AP quoted Mohammed Said, 45, as saying during a march from the Dokki neighborhood to Tahrir. “We will get in Tahrir at any price.”
Tear gas was fired on one of the bridges in central Cairo to prevent protesters from getting to Tahrir Square. In Alexandria, too, police fired tear gas to dissuade local residents from fighting with anti-coup protesters, Al Jazeera reported.
Troops sealed off Tahrir square with tanks and barbed wire and police boosted their presence at the site of a former Muslim Brotherhood protest camp as the supporters of Morsi approached the area in defiance of the security crackdown.
Soldiers and policemen boosted their presence around Rabaa al-Adaweya mosque, the larger of the Brotherhood's two former Cairo sit-ins, as the march approached.
Friday's protesters loudly chanted slogans calling for Sisi's downfall, and waved Egyptian flags.
Egyptian authorities had warned the Brotherhood that any new sit-in protest camps would not be tolerated.
Fighting also took place between supporters and opponents of Morsi in two cities in the Nile Delta.
On Friday morning, masked gunmen fired at a military vehicle near the Egyptian city of Ismailiya, killing two soldiers and wounding an officer and another soldier, a security official said.
The attack took place on the desert road between Cairo and Ismailiya when the assailants in a car without number plates opened fire, said the official.
He said one soldier died instantly and the other died in hospital, adding that the army closed the road briefly after the incident.
A similar attack happened last week in which a policeman was killed and two others wounded near Ismailiya.
The Suez Canal city and areas around it have seen regular attacks on police and military personnel, especially since the military toppled President Mohamed Morsi on July 3.
Army takes over MB assets
Meanwhile, Egyptian government is moving to take over the assets of banned group Muslim Brotherhood, which for its part called for huge protests on Sunday to refuse what it called the army’s coup.
The government said it will also ban or take over the extensive social services the Brotherhood provides, including hospitals, schools and charities.
The ban came in a recent court ruling but has only now been confirmed following a hiatus for appeals.
“By the law, by the last sentence, they are now banned,” BBC quoted an Egyptian official said.
Hani Mahanna, spokesman for the minister of social solidarity - the ministry responsible for administering the ban - said the cabinet had formed a committee to investigate the Brotherhood's sources of funds and take over its assets.
Egypt has been gripped by political and economic turmoil since army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi overthrew Islamist Mohamed Mursi, the country's first freely elected president, on July 3 after mass protests against his rule. Hundreds of people were killed when the security forces broke up the Brotherhood sit-ins in August.
The Brotherhood is facing one of the toughest crackdowns in its 85-year history. Hundreds of supporters have been killed by security forces and top leaders have been jailed.
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