One person was killed in west Cairo Thursday during confrontations between police and Islamist protesters commemorating the anniversary of a brutal Cairo crackdown, Egyptian media reported.
Attempts by Mursi supporters to demonstrate were swiftly suppressed, reflecting their dwindling ability to stage protests amid violent repression that has left more than 1,400 people dead since Mohammed Mursi’s overthrow in July 2013.
The pro-Mursi Anti-Coup Alliance had called for nationwide rallies on Thursday under the slogan “We Demand Retribution.”
Police fired tear gas during clashes with pro-Mursi demonstrators in three neighborhoods in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria and in the town of Kerdasa, southwest of Cairo.
Similar trouble was reported in north Cairo and in the Nile Delta province of Sharqiya.
At least 12 people were wounded and 19 arrested, security officials said.
Security checkpoints have been set up to monitor vehicles entering Cairo, Giza and Qalioubiya, according to Egyptian daily Al-Ahram. The paper also reported that security forces have blocked roads leading to the presidential palace in Heliopolis.
On August 14, 2013, after then army chief and now President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi had removed Egypt’s first elected president, the security forces set upon thousands of Mursi supporters at protest camps in Rabaa al-Adawiya and Nahda squares, leaving hundreds of people dead.
The assault was “one of the largest killings of demonstrators in a single day in recent history,” the New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a report released ahead of Thursday’s anniversary.
In Rabaa al-Adawiya alone at least 817 people were killed, HRW said, calling for top officials to be investigated for likely “crimes against humanity.”
Security forces were deployed Thursday around Cairo’s main squares including Tahrir, Rabaa, Nahda and Giza to thwart any attempts by pro-Mursi groups to hold rallies.