Egypt: clashes in Cairo, insurgency in Sinai

Deadly clashes erupted in Cairo Oct. 6 as pro-Morsi marches protesting the military converged on Tahrir Square, where thousands were celebrating the 40th anniversary of the 1973 war against Israel in a display of support for the army. In the ineivtable melee, police intervened with tear-gas and armored vehicles. Confrontations also ocurred in Giza, Minya and elsewhere outside the capital, with the death toll reaching 51 and some 500 detained. The National Alliance to Support Legitimacy, a coalition of Islamist forces supporting deposed president Mohamed Morsi, claimed that at least 11 protesters were killed in Cairo. The anti-Morsi movement Tamarod began gathering at Tahrir Square the previous evening, chanting pro-military slogans. Interim President Adly Mansour in a televised speech pledged to “defeat much-hated terrorism and blind violence with the rule of law that will protect the freedom of citizens.” (Al Ahram, Al Arabiya, Oct. 6; Middle East Online, Oct. 6)

While the Cairo violence made international news, the near-daily insurgent attacks in the Sinai Peninsula rarely win much notice. On the day of the Cario clashes, unknown gunmen launched an attack on a police station in the Sinai town of Arish, killing one officer. According to the army, more than 100 security personnel have been killed since the Morsi’s removal from power in July. (Aswat Masriya via AllAfrica, Oct. 6)

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  1. Sinai insurgency strikes new blow
    Egyptian officials said a massive explosion, possibly from a car bomb, hit the security headquarters in the southern Sinai town of al-Tour Oct. 7, killing at least two and wounding 48. Officials said the death toll is likely to rise as rescue workers and residents continue to search for victims under the rubble. (CBS, Oct. 7)

  2. Obama to cut Egypt military aid?
    CNN reports that th White House is preparing to announce a decision “in the coming days” on assistance to Egypt, following months of pressure to cut aid following the coup. Yet the White House has still not labelled Morsi’s removal a “coup,” and only portions of Egypt’s annual $1 billion-plus in aid were withheld in August.