Clashes erupt in Upper Egypt over arrests of Islamists

Ahram Online, Thursday 24 Apr 2014

Clashes continue in Beni Suef governorate as police arrest Islamists in home raids; protests bring train movements to a halt

Clashes erupted Thursday morning between security forces and supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi in Beni Suef governorate, south of Cairo, as police raided homes to arrest Islamists.

Fights broke out in Al-Maymoun village after alleged members of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood group blocked railway tracks and set tyres on fire to protest the arrest of several group members in the northern village, Al-Ahram Arabic news website reported. Train movements from and to the country's southern governorates was been brought to a halt as a result.

Police fired intense rounds of teargas to scatter the protesting crowds. Back and forth fighting was continuing as of time of publishing as forces blocked off roads in and out of the village, according to Al-Ahram.

A security source said 10 Brotherhood members had been arrested in raids, upon which clashes broke out.

Train movements to and from the country's southern governorates was brought to a halt for six hours due to the clashes, before they resumed in the afternoon, a railway authority official said.

Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood group, which won all elections since the toppling of former president Hosni Mubarak in 2011, has been driven back into the shadows amid a sustained government crackdown that has killed hundreds and jailed thousands of others.

Much of the upper echelons of the group, including Morsi himself, are detained and standing trial on a multitude of charges, some of which could carry the death penalty.

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