Egyptian forces are now dispersing two sit-ins in Cairo, with conflicting reports on casualties. The action is unfolding live on television. Netizens weigh in.
Both sit-ins are for the supporters of ousted president Mohammed Morsi, a senior Muslim Brotherhood member, whose one-year reign was cut short on July 3, following massive protests calling for him to resign and for early elections.
For weeks, Morsi and Muslim Brotherhood supporters have been camping in Rabaa Al Adawiya, in Nasr City, and in Al Nahda Square, near Cairo University, calling for the return to “legitimacy” or reinstating Morsi as the legally elected president of Egypt.
This morning's break up of the protests, following weeks of threats, left Egyptians calling for a cap on blood shed.
Blogger Eman Hashim tweets:
Police and army are still crashing #Rabaa sit in, #Egypt is being cursed by two evil powers fighting each other.
— Eman Hashim (@EmanHashim) August 14, 2013
According to Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Gehad El-Haddad, more than 250 people have been killed so far and over 5,000 have been wounded. He tweets:
250+ confirmed deaths. Drs saying most critical patients will die from their bullet wounds. over 5000 wounded. biggest massacre since #coup
— Gehad El-Haddad (@gelhaddad) August 14, 2013
Others provide different figures:
According to Ahmed El Ansary, deputy head of Emergency Authority: 50 injured and 4 dead in #Rabaa and #Nahda #Egypt
— Ranya Khalifa رانيا (@RanyaKhalifa) August 14, 2013
Mahmoud Faisal sarcastically notes:
الجزيرة : 150 مليون قتيل و 2 مليار مصاب في رابعة وحدها وان قوات الامن المركزي استعانت بباور رينجرز وسلاحف النينجا في عملية الفض #رابعة
— Mahmoud Faisal (@Mhmod_Faisal) August 14, 2013
Al Jazeera: 150 million killed and 2 billion injured in Rabaa alone and the Central Security Forces are getting help from the Power Rangers and the Ninja Turtles in dispersing the Rabaa protesters
Egyptian blogger Mahmoud Salem sums up a common sentiment regarding the conflicting reports:
Nahda sit in is cleared, Rabaa is ongoing, conflicting reports of the dead on both sides. Battle of narrative. I believe no one.
— السيد مانكي (@Sandmonkey) August 14, 2013
And commentator Arabist adds:
Confrontation w/ MB at this point will exacerbate Egypt's pre-existing problems: lawlessness in Sinai, sectarianism (esp. in Upper Egypt)
— arabist (@arabist) August 14, 2013
Elsewhere, there seems to be repurcussions. Mariam Kirollos reports that Copts, Egypt's Christians, are being attacked:
It seems like the Copts in Delga, Minya are being attacked now. #Egypt
— MK مريم (@MariamKirollos) August 14, 2013
Stay tuned for more coverage from Egypt.