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224 injured so far at US embassy clashes in Cairo: Health ministry

Injury toll rises to 224 in ongoing skirmishes between protesters and Egyptian security forces near Cairo's US embassy

Ahram Online , Thursday 13 Sep 2012
Tahrir square
Head injury on Tahrir square following anti-islam film protest and clashes. (Photo: Bel Trew)
Views: 5952
Views: 5952

The Egyptian Ministry of Health affirmed that the total number of injuries has risen to 224, as street fights between protesters and security forces in the vicinity of the US embassy in Cairo continue into Thursday evening.

Ahmed El-Ansari, deputy head of the ambulance service, speaking to Middle East News Agency, confirmed that the majority of injuries were minor and were dealt with on site. Only eight cases, the health official added, had been transferred to hospital.

On the ground, at a makeshift medical centre on the corner of Tahrir Square and Qasr Al-Nile Bridge by the clashes, crisis team head Dr. Rami El-Nazar affirmed that they had received approximately 60 wounded protesters.

"We don't have a critical situation yet," El-Nazar told Ahram Online, as he coordinated the ambulance response, "what we are seeing is mostly asphyxiation from the tear gas and leg trauma from running."

At the time, El-Nazar's team was treating a protester in his twenties who had sustained a serious head injury during an exchange of rocks between the protesters and security forces. In front of the ambulances, protesters had set up a stall attending to the less severe tear gas injuries with homemade treatments.

"So far only four of the 60 have had to be hospitalised, the most critical was an ankle injury, otherwise we are treating everyone on site," El-Nazar continued, "the support here round the clock – we've got seven to eight doctors working in shifts."

The tear gas inhalation injuries, the doctor added, were fairly normal. In past demonstrations, protesters have reported people experiencing seizures during some tear gas attacks as well as expired gas canisters, possibly adding to its potency.

Ahram Online saw security forces using shotguns loaded with pellets, however, the majority of the injuries El-Nazar stated was from the gas.

An Interior Ministry source speaking to the Middle East News Agency, Wednesday afternoon, asserted 26 security personnel had been wounded in the ongoing clashes.  An Ahram Online reporter saw inert officers with head and leg injuries being carried by their colleagues to safety from the front line adjacent to the US Embassy.

El-Nazar said the fighting was not going to finish any time soon, adding he believed it could stretch through the night.

"The crisis team is waiting for our orders from the health ministry. Our job is to provide relief, so we will stay here for as long as it takes," he concluded.

Clashes erupted at the embassy late Wednesday between around 200 protesters and security forces. Rocks and teargas were launched between the two sides.

Protests began outside the embassy on Tuesday when thousands of people gathered to condemn an anti-Islam film that insults the Prophet Mohamed.

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14-09-2012 07:39pm
Under which law should the US Prosecute the makers of this movie?
People who say the US should prosecute the makers do not understand freedom. Clearly in your country people cannot say certain things about Islam are they will be arrested. This is not freedom and if you wanna grow up and be a real Democracy and have freedom like the West, then you have to suck it up and understand that some things you may not like about FREEDOM.
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diarmid flatley
13-09-2012 03:42pm
In the US, our constitution has the Bill of Rights. We have the right to practice whatever religion we choose, I don't recall seeing where we have the right to condemn or slander other peoples faiths. Personally I feel the feel the film maker should be given a 1 way ticket to Libya, Egypt and Yemen....instead of hiding somewhere in the US. I remember my mother telling me " If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all." His movie has cost many good people their lives. Is he willing to put his life on the line for the drivel he produced?
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Prince of Peace
13-09-2012 03:23pm
What is the real insult here?
The real insult here is by the followers of a religion which teaches peace to their prophet.
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14-09-2012 03:38am
To Prince of ignorance
Prince it incitement, this is not covered in freedom of expression. The US responsiblity is that it should issue an apology and tell mUslims around the world through Embassies where the protests are held that perpetrators will be prosecuted under the law. Case close. The US has too much macho man and trying to fles its military muscles. Time has come all Muslim countries should kick out US embassies the spy nests rightaway.

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