Thursday, June 30, 2011

Egypt urged to investigate fresh protest violence

29 June 2011

"The Egyptian authorities must immediately launch an independent and impartial investigation into the conduct of security forces at demonstrations, Amnesty International said amid continuing protests in central Cairo.

An Amnesty International team in Cairo witnessed riot police charging demonstrators in Tahrir Square, firing tear gas randomly, beating protesters with sticks and firing shotguns. Some protesters threw rocks and occasionally petrol bombs.

The Ministry of Health and Population said more than a thousand people were injured, including some 40 members of the security forces.

This heavy-handed response is reminiscent of the violence in January and is a chilling reminder of their inability to deal with protests, ahead of calls for mass demonstrations on 8 July. This latest incident spotlights the urgent need for reform of the security forces so Egyptians can begin to trust them,” said Amnesty International.

“Many want to see law and order maintained but this cannot be done by cracking down on protesters or by ignoring the demands for justice from victims of violence during mass protests earlier this year.

The demonstration appears to have been triggered by the security forces’ violent dispersal of relatives of those killed during the “25 January Revolution” yesterday....."

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