Calm in Suez ahead of planned protests to defy curfew
The day after a state of emergency is declared in the city, Suez is mainly calm, but evening protests are expected which aim to defy curfew imposed by Morsi
Ahram Online, Monday 28 Jan 2013
People shout slogans as they surround the ambulance carrying a body of a protester killed during clashes yesterday in the port city in Suez, about 134 km (83 miles) east of in Cairo January 26, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)
A day after President Mohamed Morsi declared a state of emergency in Suez, a city rocked by violence over the weekend, residents seemed to be going on with daily life as normal.
However, a variety of political actors have called for protests on Monday evening which would defy the 9pm to 6am city curfew imposed by Morsi.
Riots broke out at a maximum security prison in the city earlier on Monday; inmates set the establishment on fire after one of their colleagues was killed. Armed forces soon took control of the situation and surrounded the building with armoured vehicles, temporarily deporting the inmates to Cairo.
Apart from the prison riot, the city was generally calm.
A number of protests are planned by opposition parties and revolutionary groups in Suez starting at 8pm, with the aim of defying the curfew, which they rejected and described as an attempt by Morsi to sow division between the people and the army.
At least nine people were pronounced dead in the city of Suez on Friday, the second anniversary of Egypt's revolution, when clashes broke out near governorate headquarters with protesters and police throwing stones at each other. Some protesters hurled Molotov cocktails at security forces and eventually the building caught fire.
Protesters in Suez chanted for "vengeance" during the funeral march held on Saturday for those killed during clashes at the governorate building. At the funeral, many mourners blamed the interior ministry, President Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood for the lives that were taken in clashes with security forces.
The funeral procession was interrupted when the mourners were attacked. Protesters were shot with live ammunition and birdshot, according to the head of the doctors' syndicate, Mohamed Salama. A CSF conscript was also killed in the clashes.
Later during the night, the military deployed forces in Suez.
The city of Port Said saw deadly clashes starting on Saturday, following a court verdict sentencing 21 Port Said residents to death for the killing of 74 Ahly football club fans last February in Egypt's worst-ever football violence. The killings came at the close of a match between local team Masry and Cairene giants Ahly.
On Sunday night, President Morsi declared a 30-day state of emergency in the cities of Port Said, Suez and Ismailia, and also imposed a curfew from 9pm to 6am.
The ongoing violence in Egypt since Friday has so far seen more than 40 dead and over 500 injured across nine governorates, according to the health ministry. Cities holding major protests include Cairo, Port Said Alexandria, Beheira, Luxor, Kafr El-Sheikh, Ismailia, Gharbiya, Sharqiya and Suez.