Egypt’s interior ministry announced that it has directed its staff to use live ammunition in the face of any attack on government buildings or security forces, asserting its right to self-defence.
All forces are supplied with suitable weapons and ammunition, and “the Ministry of Interior fully trusts the capacity of its men to fend these attacks and restore security throughout the nation,” the interior ministry said in a statement issued on Thursday.
The ministry’s remarks come in reaction to the Muslim Brotherhood’s attacks on government and police buildings in a number of Egyptian governorates. The escalating attacks include vandalising and looting buildings and setting them on fire. The Brotherhood members attacked forces securing government buildings and blocked roads to spread chaos, the statement said.
“We will continue to go after anyone who participated in these attacks to receive due punishment, warning anyone who seeks to disturb the safety of the nation,” the statement concluded.
The Ministry of Interior had repeatedly indicated that its forces are not armed with live ammunition when dispersing protests. The ministry also stressed that it only uses teargas and birdshot with peaceful protesters. Although there have been reports of deaths and injuries by live ammunition.