Amid growing violence between supporters and opponents of Egypt’s President Mursi, the prime minister has appealed for calm to allow for a “national dialogue”.
Hicham Kandil called on an end to the fighting around the presidential palace in Cairo which has resulted in at least two deaths and reportedly injured at least 200.
There have been reports of violence in several other cities. In the northern town of Ismailia, anti-Mursi protesters set fire to the headquarters of the Freedom and Justice Party, the Muslim Brotherhood’s political wing.
As the crisis intensifies ahead of a planned referendum on a new constitution on December 15, three advisers to President Mursi have now resigned in protest at the violence and his increased powers.
He insists he will relinquish them but his opponents fear freedoms will be eroded and stricter Islamic law applied.