04/09/2011, 00.00
EGYPT
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Clashes between soldiers and demonstrators in Cairo, 2 dead, 15 wounded. Sit-in in Tahrir Square

Campaigners calling for the resignation of the leader of the Military Council, Tantawi, Minister of Defence for 20 years with Mubarak, the transfer of power to a civilian Council, and the prosecution of the "rais". The square, symbol of the Jasmine Revolution, once again occupied by demonstrators.

Cairo (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Violence has returned to Tahrir Square. Local sources say that two people were killed and fifteen injured after the army tried to disperse a crowd of about 2 thousand protesters who had gathered in the night in the main square in Cairo. Doctors in hospitals in Cairo said that the dead and wounded present gun wounds. Instead an army spokesman said soldiers had fired of blanks. It is unclear whether in addition to the soldiers there were other armed people in the square.

The clashes lasted from 2 to 5 am this morning. Yesterday hundreds of thousands of people protested across the country. The army has tried to enforce a curfew in Tahrir Square, and tried to drive away the protesters using batons and "taser" guns.  But violent clashes erupted, with baton charges, stone-throwing and gunfire. Two army vehicles were burned.

Protesters have used barbed wire left by the soldiers, and created barriers. They also showed a pool of blood to the witnesses who rushed to the square, where at present there are no soldiers. As in the protest against Mubarak, anyone who enters the square must identify themselves to the demonstrator’s security guards.

The protesters said they would preside over the square until concrete steps are taken to prosecute Mubarak, as long as the Military Council that rules the country refuses to hand over power to a Civilian council and until Military general Mohammed Hussein Tantawi has not resigned. Tantawi was a member for over 20 years of Mubarak's entourage, holding the post of defence minister.

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