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Cairo's streets run red with blood after massacre that claims 51 lives

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
July 8th, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Egyptian authorities say that at least 51 people were killed and more than 300 injured in after a sit-in protest by Muslim Brotherhood supporters demanding the reinstatement of ousted President Mohamed Morsi was fired upon in Cairo. The deadly incident has inflamed an already incendiary atmosphere in Egypt following Morsi's ouster by the military. 

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Egypt's interim administration expressed "deep regret" for those killed in Cairo. The transitional administration says it has formed a judicial committee to investigate the events. The statement called on protesters not to approach any military or "other vital installations."

A doctor at the scene said that "the majority of injured had gunshot wounds to the head."

Gehad Haddad, a spokesman for Muslim Brotherhood, said that early Monday morning, army and police forces started firing at sit-in protesters in front of the Republican Guard headquarters in Cairo. "We have people hit in the head, we have bullets that exploded as they entered the body, cluttering organs and body parts" Haddad said.

"Every police force in the world understands how to disperse a sit-in. This is just a criminal activity targeting protesters."

The military says that a "terrorist group" was responsible, adding that two officers had also been killed.

Hany Abdel Latif, Egypt's interior ministry spokesman, said that "the Egyptian police is the force of the people. They are operating for all the Egyptian people, with all their affiliations."

Speaking at a press conference held in Cairo, Abdel Latif said "The Egyptian security forces are working to safeguard the freedom of the Egyptian people following the January 2011 revolution, He added that the police and security apparatus will not protect any particular regime, not "the former, the existing, or the upcoming.

"The Egyptian police is out of the political equation. It can not be part of any political process in any way, shape or form," Abdel Latif said.

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood has called for an "uprising" in the country and asked the "international community to stop the "massacres" in the aftermath of last week's military coup.

The party, which lost the highest number of seats at the parliament in last week's coup, urged "the international community and international groups and all the free people of the world to intervene to stop further massacres [...] and prevent a new Syria in the Arab world."

Egypt closed down the Cairo headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood, saying weapons were found inside it.

In the meantime, Egypt's interim leadership struggled to find a consensus on who should be the prime minister.

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