Ministry: Officer who refused to shoot protesters didn’t work for security forces

An officer who allegedly refused to shoot at protesters during downtown clashes in late November hadn't worked for Central Security Forces (CSF) since March, the Interior Ministry said Monday.

The ministry's statement came in response to a report by the Hisham Mubarak Law Center that said a CSF officer had refused to shoot demonstrators during the clashes, which began on 19 November and left at least 45 dead.

In the statement, the ministry said the name of the officer, Ibrahim Fathy Adly al-Sayyid, wasn't found on the list of troops stationed around or near the Interior Ministry building during the time.

Sayyid had been absent since 6 March and was removed from the service on 27 March, which means he couldn't have been present during the recent clashes, the ministry said.

"A human rights center claims that an officer refused to fire at protesters during the November clashes. The officer appeared in a video clip circulated among websites and satellite channels under a false name: Ibrahim Hassan Mahmoud," the statement said.

In the video clip, Sayyid claimed he was among the officers tasked with securing the Interior Ministry building on 19 November. He said as soon as he saw protesters falling dead, he dropped his gun, which he said prompted another officer to strike him. Protesters took him to a makeshift hospital in Tahrir Square, he said.

The ministry has denied that security forces shot at protesters during the clashes. But several eyewitnesses and medical reports noted that many of the victims had died as a result of being shot with live ammunition.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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