Tue, September 18, 2012
World > Africa

Protests, clashes continue across Egypt over anti-Islam movie

2012-09-14 22:35:12 GMT2012-09-15 06:35:12(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Egyptian riot police confront protestors in front of the U.S. embassy in Cairo on Sept. 12, 2012. An Egyptian ministerial meeting held Wednesday demanded the U.S. government to show a clear-cut stance against a filmmaker whose movie they say insults the Muslim Prophet. (Photo/Xinhua)

CAIRO, Sept. 14 (Xinhua) -- Egyptian people staged demonstrations in the capital Cairo on Friday, in protest of a U.S. -made movie deemed anti-Islam.

Protesters mainly come from political and religious movements, including the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), the Salafist movement and Islamic movement.

Clashes continued Friday around the U.S. embassy in central Cairo. Some movements, however, withdrew or toned down from the protests for fear of further deterioration of the situation. The MB, for example, said its participation is symbolic so as to avoid escalations.

On Friday, hundreds of protestors hurled stones to the police. Health Ministry said 27 were injured on Friday, increasing the toll to 251 since Tuesday.

After Tuesday's breach of the U.S. embassy, at least 224 people were injured in clashes since Wednesday night.

The police have arrested 94 protestors, using teargas to disperse those surrounding the embassy, according to state-TV.

On Friday, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi repeated his condemnation of the disputed movie, rejected violence and promised to protect diplomatic missions in comments made in Italy, the second stop of his trip to Europe.

Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Qandil has inspected security condition around the U.S. embassy, and criticized youths of attacking security men with Molotov bottles and stones, according to Egyptian official news agency MENA.

The way of expressing anger over the movie should be "peaceful, " not by attacking security forces, the prime minister said.

In a phone call with Egyptian Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al- Sissi, U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta described the movie as "disgusting", stressing that the U.S. leadership respects all religions.

"The movie is an aggression against Islam," which targets relations between the two countries, Panetta said.

Panetta said he understands the anger of Egyptians, extending the U.S. administration's appreciation for Egyptian government's efforts to protect foreign diplomatic missions.

Meanwhile, Sissi asked the United States to adopt legal procedures so as to avoid such offenses in future. He asserted his support for Egypt-U.S. strategic relations to preserve mutual interests.

Also, several Coptic movements participated in the protests in central Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday, carrying banners asking for criminalizing the acts of offending religions.

On Friday, protests spread to the U.S. consulate in Alexanderia and the headquarters of international peacekeeping forces in north Sinai.

At least four peacekeepers were injured when some gunmen attacked Friday evening the headquarters of international peacekeeping forces in north Sinai, a peacekeeping official told Xinhua.

The forces and militant protesters exchanged fire, with protesters setting one car and the camp's monitoring tower ablaze.

The movie infuriated the Muslim communities worldwide, and sparked protests and assaults against U.S. diplomatic missions in Egypt, Libya, Sudan and Tunisia, leading to the deaths of four U.S. diplomatic staffers in Libya, including U.S. ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens.


Add Your Comments:

Your Name:
Your Country:
(English Only)
Please read our Terms of Service. Messages that harass, abuse or threaten others; have obscene or otherwise objectionable content; have spam, commercial or advertising content or links may be removed.