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Police fire tear gas to disperse protest against police violence in Aswan

Police disperse angry demonstrators in Upper Egypt following the death of a boatman, allegedly killed by a police officer

Hatem Maher, Sunday 13 Nov 2011
Demonstrations
(Photo: Ahram)
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Police used tear gas to disperse protesters in Aswan in the early hours of Sunday as they were demonstrating against police violence after a boatman was allegedly killed by a police officer last week.

Families of the victim besieged the police headquarters and were involved in scuffles with security personnel, who responded by firing tear gas to repel them.

Angry demonstrators have also blocked the road that lines the Nile River, keeping police officers at bay who attempt to break up the protest.

Nubian boatman Mohamed Helal was reportedly shot by a policeman on the first day of the Islamic Eid Al-Adha holiday. He later died from his wounds.

According to state news agency, MENA, demonstrators also tried to storm Aswan’s hospital after learning of Helal's death.

“We have tightened security in front of the police headquarters following the incidents,” a security official said.

The interior ministry has been widely vilified for failing to restore order following January’s revolution. It also came under fire for a number of reported torture incidents.

The fresh row is likely to heap more pressure on Egypt's beleaguered Prime Minister Essam Sharaf and Interior Minister Mansour El-Essawi.

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