Multiple deaths are being reported from the Egyptian capital Cairo and other major cities as tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets in a so-called ‘Day of Rage’.
There were violent scenes at the huge Ramses Square in central Cairo, a focal point of the Muslim Brotherhood demonstrations.
Eyewitnesses reported 27 people killed and scores wounded by gunfire from a police station on the edge of the square which came under attack. Security sources told Reuters that there were around 50 deaths.
The bodies were laid out in a mosque near the protest in Ramses Square.
Elsewhere in the capital, Egyptian television footage showed gunmen among Islamist protesters firing from the 15th May Bridge, which leads to Ramses Square.
The violence followed Wednesday’s assault by security forces on two Brotherhood sit-ins in Cairo that left hundreds dead.
Five people were killed in clashes in the city of Fayoum south of Cairo, and 70 were wounded in the clashes between Mursi supporters and security forces, a hospital official said.
There are reports of five deaths in Ismalia, and eight in the Mediterranean town of Damietta.
Violence also broke out in Egypt’s second city Alexandria, with five deaths reported there, as well as in Tanta in the Nile delta. Shooting has been reported in Beni Soueif and the tourist centre of Hourghada.
Twenty-four members of the Egyptian police force have been killed since late on Thursday night across the country, a security official said. That brought the number of police killed in political violence to 67 since Wednesday.
The army deployed dozens of armoured vehicles on major roads around the capital after Mursi’s Brotherhood movement called the demonstrations.
The Interior Ministry had warned police would use live ammunition against anyone threatening public buildings.euronews streaming LIVE
Huge retreat on May 15 bridge. Heavy gunfire. Many retreat into Zamalek. pic.twitter.com/okADJ62ASM— Sharif Kouddous (@sharifkouddous) August 16, 2013