Hundreds of demonstrators clashed with Egyptian police in Tahrir Square, Cairo, protesting against President Mohamed Morsi and his party. The violence comes on the second anniversary of the Egyptian uprising that saw Hosni Mubarak toppled.
Early Friday morning has seen heavy clashes between youths and police. The protesters were throwing petrol bombs and firecrackers. Police retaliated with plumes of teargas.
Reports say police set several tents on the square ablaze using incendiary bombs thrown by protesters.
According to the Health Ministry, 25 people have been wounded in the clashes.
The violence was followed by a break, but later on the day clashes were reported in the downtown Cairo again.
On Friday a mass rally is expected on Tahrir. Protesters accuse Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood of failing to comply with the purposes of the revolution. They demand greater democracy, claiming that Morsi’s party has usurped power.
Addressing the nation on Thursday ahead of the anniversary, Morsi urged Egyptians to mark it “in a civilized, peaceful way that safeguards our nation, our institutions, our lives.”
His call is likely to be ignored as violence has become common in the streets of Egypt. On Monday three people were killed and a dozen more injured in clashes that erupted after a bystander was hit by a bullet fired by police chasing a suspected drug dealer in the north of Cairo.
On the same day activists in another Egyptian city, Alexandria, were sprayed with teargas as police tried to disperse the crowds waiting outside the court where several police officers are standing trial for the killing of civilians during the 2011 uprising.
Early December saw 10 protesters killed outside the presidential palace as Morsi supporters attacked the sit-in demonstration against the new constitution.
The document was passed by a national referendum gaining 64 per cent in favor. President Morsi signed the constitution into law on December 26.