Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Violent clashes in Egypt between opposition protesting Islamist constitution and Muslim Brotherhood backers

CAIRO (Reuters) - Islamists fought protesters outside the Egyptian president's palace on Wednesday, while inside the building his deputy proposed a way to end a crisis over a draft constitution that has split the most populous Arab nation.

Stones and petrol bombs flew between opposition protesters and supporters of President Mohamed Mursi who had flocked to the palace in response to a call from the Muslim Brotherhood.

Two Islamists were hit in the legs by what their friends said were bullets fired during the clashes in streets around the compound in northern Cairo. One of them was bleeding heavily.

A leftist group said Islamists had cut off the ear of one of its members. Medical sources said 23 people had been wounded in clashes.

Riot police deployed between the two sides to try to stop the confrontations which flared after dark despite an attempt by Vice President Mahmoud Mekky to calm the political crisis.