Army apologizes for ‘unintentional confrontations’ with Friday protesters

On its official Facebook page, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces issued an apology to the 25 January youth for what it described as "unintentional friction" between military police members and youth protesting on Friday.

The council affirmed it is keen on achieving the noble goals of the revolution, adding that no orders were or will be given to attack Egyptians. All necessary procedures will be adopted to avoid the repetition of such clashes, the message said, without giving further details.

In a second statement, the army said it would "immediately release all the youth of the January 25 revolution that were detained in Tahrir Square (on Friday)", but did not say how many there were.

In response to the use of force to disperse Friday's protests calling for the removal of Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq's government, hundreds of Facebook activists called for a protest today in Tahrir against using force on peaceful protesters.

The activists published videos which they said show military police using whips and tasers to break up the protest.

On Friday, thousands of Egyptians rallied in the square to celebrate the success of the revolution and call for a new government purged of old guard remnants. Even after a government reshuffle on Wednesday, a number of key ministries, including foreign affairs and defence, are still in the hands of Mubarak regime veterans.

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