Egypt clashes: At least 33 killed, 1,700 injured

CAIRO – Clashes again erupted in the Egyptian capital yesterday as security forces continued their efforts to clear Cairo’s Tahrir Square of protesters, the BBC said.

At least 33 people have died since the violence began on Saturday, and the death toll is expected to rise. The number of people wounded has reached 1,700, a health ministry spokesman said, quoted by CNN. Doctors at Cairo’s Tahrir Square said injuries include gunshot wounds, excessive tear gas inhalations and beatings to the head.

Culture Minister Emad Abu Ghazi has resigned in protest at the government’s handling of the demonstrators.

Protesters fear the interim military government is trying to retain its grip on power. The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, led by Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi, is charged with overseeing the country’s transition to democracy after three decades of autocratic rule under Mubarak. Calls for his resignation could be heard during the weekend’s protests.
This is the longest continuous protest since President Hosni Mubarak was ousted in February. It casts a shadow over elections due to start next week.

Large crowds were again seen streaming into Tahrir Square on Monday – defying the military’s attempts to keep them away from the place that was the symbolic heart of demonstrations against Mubarak. TV footage showed tear gas being fired into the protesters, while fire bombs and chunks of concrete were reportedly being lobbed back at the police.

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