Update: Confrontation between police, army under control, says military

Update: Confrontation between police, army under control, says military

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Mon, 19/11/2012 - 22:48

The violent clashes between police and army officers that broke out Monday evening in New Cairo's Fifth Settlement have been brought under control, said military spokesperson Ahmed Mohamed Ali.

Central Military Zone Commaner Major Tawhid Tawfiq Abdel Sami, as well as the commanders of the Military Police and the commando forces, have gone to the Fifth Settlement to resolve the situation with the help of the Interior Ministry, Ali said. The zone was already secured by the military police.

Ali said the confrontation was "incidental" and that the police and the army are partners in securing the country.

The clashes were allegedly sparked by the army’s intent to avenge a military officer who had a dispute with a police officer on Saturday. The military officer claims that the policeman stopped him on the Cairo-Ismailia Road to check his driver’s license, then took him to the police station and assaulted him.

Eyewitnesses said that on Monday evening the police fired teargas canisters to disperse the army officers who came to protest the alleged assault. Assistant Interior Minister for Cairo Security Osama al-Saghir denied that any teargas was fired.

Saghir added that around 200 army officers were protesting at the police department demanding justice for their colleague. Saghir said that the Interior Ministry was coordinating with the Armed Forces to contain the crisis.

Security sources said that the leadership of the Cairo Security Directorate went to the police department in the Fifth Settlement to try to convince Armed Forces to disperse.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm