- Middle East/North Africa
Protesters demanding President Mohamed Morsy’s ouster regrouped on Thursday evening with renewed marches to the presidential palace in Heliopolis. The demonstrations come after at least five died in the course of clashes Wednesday night between Morsy’s backers and opponents.
A march originating from Al-Nour Mosque in Abbasseya arrived in the evening at Marghani Street near the palace, where earlier in the day Armed Forces were reported to have begun building a wall to block demonstrators. Protestors called for Morsy’s downfall to pay for yesterday’s bloodshed.
Some young men and women in the march carried symbolic coffins, chanting favorite slogans such as “The people demand the downfall of the regime,” “Freedom,” and “Justice, justice, they killed our brothers with bullets.” Many were wearing helmets, a sign they were prepared for possible confrontations.
An angry mood pervaded among the protesters, who often chanted that they would refuse to dialogue with the president. One activist, Kamal, frequently led the chant: “No dialogue with the one killing revolutionaries.” Those present condemned Morsy’s use of what they called a militia to attack the opposition’s peaceful demonstration.
They also chanted: “Listen to our voice everywhere; this night is the Brotherhood’s end.”
Muslim Brotherhood members and members of other Islamic factions who had come to Heliopolis from Cairo and across Egypt's governorates withdrew from the scene of the clashes early on Thursday afternoon after the Republican Guards demanded all protesters leave the area by 3 pm.
The Republican Guards are currently securing the palace with barbed wire barriers. Rows of security forces stand behind them with batons and tasers.
Two tanks and two other military vehicles were positioned behind the security forces, facing in the direction of the palace.
Around 10 ambulances have been positioned close to Marghani Street in anticipation of potential violence.