FJP offices torched in Beni Suef, thousands out in governorates for 30 June
Anti-Morsi protesters torch offices of the Freedom and Justice Party in Beni Suef in the early hours of Sunday
Ahram Online, Sunday 30 Jun 2013
Protesters opposing Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi wave Egyptian flags and shout slogans against him and members of the Muslim Brotherhood at Tahrir square in Cairo, June 30, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)
Protesters in Beni Suef city torched the offices of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) early Sunday, hours before mass nationwide anti-regime protests are due to take place.
Nasser Saad, the FJP's media spokesman in Beni Suef, which is located in northern Upper Egypt, said that several people threw Molotov cocktails at the main office's balconies at two o'clock in the morning. They then moved to a secretariat office and torched it too.
According to Ahram Arabic news website, further clashes occurred between supporters and opponents of the Brotherhood at the Salafist Call School beside Beni Suef's governorate headquarters. Hundreds of young men arrived there and attempted to break into the school claiming that FJP uses it as a store for weapons.
Security forces reportedly dispersed the crowds.
Tensions have been building up in Beni Suef over the past week, like in many Egyptian governorates, as the country braces for mass nationwide protests Sunday aimed at forcing President Mohamed Morsi, who hails from the Muslim Brotherhood, to step down.
Anti-Morsi protesters went out in marches on Friday chanting against the president and the FJP. Seven people were injured in Beni Suef in Friday clashes between supporters and opponents of the president.
On Saturday night, thousands took to the streets in Egypt's governorates ahead of Sunday's demonstrations which were called for by Rebel campaign that aimed at collecting signed petitions to withdraw confidence from Morsi.
Thousands went out in anti-Morsi protests, including in Suez, Mahalla in Gharbiya governorate, Port Said, and the Nile Delta's Menoufiya.
In the Nile Delta city of Zagazig in Egypt's Sharqiya governorate, Rebel campaign supporters staged a sit-in in front of Morsi's family home Saturday night.
Tensions have been building between supporters and opponents of the president for several weeks. Clashes broke out in several governorates in recent days, including in Alexandria and across the Nile Delta, leaving at least seven dead and over 600 injured.
In Cairo, opposition forces have already started gathering in Cairo's central Tahrir Square and at the Ittihadeya Palace in Heliopolis hours before anticipated protests take to the streets.
Meanwhile, Morsi's supporters, mainly from Islamist groups, continue their sit-in at Rabaa El-Adawiya Mosque in Cairo's Nasr City district. They staged a rally there Friday asserting Morsi's right to continue his term as president until the next elections, scheduled for 2016.
A three-hour speech by Morsi Wednesday night called for national reconciliation but was not well-received by the opposition.