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Continuing Anti-SCAF Protests Lead to Multiple Deaths

Clashes renewed today as protesters outside the Cabinet and Parliament buildings, located close to Tahrir Square in Cairo, were violently cleared by military police. The protesters, who have been camped for three weeks outside the Cabinet building, have kept newly appointed Prime Minister Kamal al-Ganzouri from being able to enter his office. The protesters have repeated longstanding calls for an end to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces’ control of Egypt.

In an attempt to clear away the protesters, soldiers “bea[t] women with sticks and hurl[ed] chunks of concrete and glass onto protesters from the roof of [the Parliament Building].” Protesters retaliated by “throwing fire bombs and rocks at the security forces [and by setting] a part of Parliament on fire.” A Health Ministry official anonymously confirmed two deaths, while an official statement from the Ministry confirmed that at least 222 people suffered varying injuries. Activists claimed eight died in the conflicts today.

Among the deceased in today’s clashes was Sheik Emad Effat, a cleric from Al-Azhar. Effat was an activist and a pro-revolution Islamic scholar. In addition, Effat was an outspoken critic of the “ruling military council” and had issued a fatwa “which forbade voting for parliamentary candidates associated with the Mubarak regime and former members of the dissolved National Democratic Party.” Effat was reportedly shot in the heart by military police while he demonstrated with other protesters outside the Cabinet Building.

These latest clashes took place one day after millions of Egyptians voted in the second stage of parliamentary elections.