World Bulletin / News Desk
Opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi scuffled with his supporters on Friday during a demonstration.
Egyptians had been nervous that Friday's anti-Mursi protest, flagged for several weeks, could turn violent and security was tight around the presidential palace and some other sites.
In Cairo's Tahrir Square, rival groups of youths hurled stones and bottles at each other, staging running battles in side streets. Some wielded sticks and charged opponents. Dozens also scuffled in Ismailiya, east of Cairo, a witness said.
But scenes were calmer in other areas of Cairo where Mursi's opponents gathered, and total numbers across the city and elsewhere were still small by early afternoon, numbering in the hundreds.
Most Egyptian political groups stayed away, linking organisers with counter-revolutionary forces. Two controversial Egyptian figures, anti-revolution television presenter Tawfiq Okasha and former MP Mohamed Abu-Hamed, were the first to call for mass protests aimed at "toppling Muslim Brotherhood rule" on Friday, 24 August.
"Wake up Egyptian people. Don't fall for the Brotherhood," said Mahmoud, in his 50s, addressing about 200 people in Tahrir Square. "Egypt is for all Egyptians, not only one group."
But some said Mursi should be judged at the ballot box, not on the street.
"Respectable democratic countries elect a leader and then give him time to prove himself," said Sabr Salah, 47, despite not being a Mursi backer. "We must give Mursi a chance because he won the election. We can vote him out again next time."
Violence in Tahrir flared when bangs went off nearby, but it was not clear if they was caused by a weapon or something else.
Elsewhere, police had cordoned off the presidential palace and the army blocked a road to the Defence Ministry, where there had been clashes between protesters and troops this year.
April 6 said in a statement before the protest that it disagreed with the Brotherhood on many issues but added: "Does all that and more push us to issue a judgement now to burn the group's members or premises and exile them from the country?"
Ahmed Said, head of the Free Egyptians, another liberal group staying away, wrote on Facebook: "Those who want to bring down the Brotherhood should bring them down via elections."
Though some say he deserves more time, he has still drawn criticism, including accusations that he has sought to muzzle the media. Two journalists face charges of insulting Mursi.
However, some liberals back Mursi's early moves, such as his Aug. 12 decision to dismiss top generals, who were seen as obstructing civilian rule, and to cancel a decree that had given the army legislative power in the absence of the parliament, that the generals had dissolved based on a court order.
Yet, one of the biggest tests Mursi faces is whether he can turn around the stricken economy. Anger at the gaping rich-poor divide was a major spark for the anti-Mubarak revolt.
This week, Egypt started talks for a $4.8 billion loan from the International Monetary Fund which could help rebuild confidence in a nation that was once a darling of frontier market investors.
Led by hard-charging European Commission competition chief Margrethe Vestager, the EU will impose a massive penalty against Google that would break the previous record of 1.06 billion euros set in 2009 against Intel, the US chipmaker.
"An agreement has been signed," May's spokesman told AFP without revealing the details.
Endangered Iberian lynx, symbol of Donada National Park’s biodiversity, dies during evacuation
They used Telegram "at each stage of the preparation of this terrorist attack," it said.
The massive operation to test tower blocks follows the Grenfell Tower inferno earlier this month that is presumed to have killed 79 people after it spread at shocking speed.
Mohammed VI told ministers Sunday of his "disappointment, dissatisfaction and concern" that the $670 million (600 million euro) programme in the northern Rif region was behind schedule, according to a cabinet statement.
Black Lives Matter protest in Stratford death of black male in police custody
Rescue workers searching for survivors of boat carrying 150 people
The election commission extended the voting period by an hour owing to poor turnout on a day of soaring temperatures, while Socialist Prime Minister Edi Rama took to Twitter and Facebook urging people to "vote, vote, vote".
Activists object to Joseph Kabila's presence in South Africa questioning whether he was legitimate DRC representative
"The total resources mobilised could reach a maximum of 17 billion euros -- but the immediate cost to the state is a little more than five billion," said Finance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan.
Julienne Sassou Nguesso, 50, and her 53-year-old husband Guy Johnson were placed under investigation this week for "money laundering and misuse of public funds", the sources said.
The broadcaster said that Ibraheema Yakubu, assigned to cover a rally on June 23 in the north-western city of Kaduna, "was taken into police custody and beaten by officers of the police force".
'Biggest mosque of central Asia' resembles Ankara’s Kocatepe Mosque
Morocco said late Saturday it has been in talks with Dutch officials in the past two days urging them to extradite "a notorious drug trafficker" who allegedly funds "some groups in northern Morocco".
Nearly 3.5 million voters will choose from 18 parties to govern the country for the next four years