Developments since the Egyptian bloodbath

CAIRO, Aug 15, 2013 (AFP)

Developments in Egypt, where a security crackdown on ousted president Mohamed Morsi’s supporters on Wednesday turned into a bloodbath.

According to an updated toll at least 525 people were killed — 482 civilians and 43 police — and 3,500 injured. According to a senior health ministry official 202 protesters were killed in the Rabaa al-Adawiya protest camp alone.

The Muslim Brotherhood says 2,200 have been killed and more than 10,000 injured.

– Early in the morning, security forces backed by bulldozers move in on the two huge camps — Rabaa al-Adawiya and Al-Nahda Square in Cairo — where for more than a month thousands of Morsi supporters have been calling for his reinstatement, following his July 3 ouster by the army.

– Two hours after the start of the operation, the interior ministry says security forces have “total control” over the smaller of the two protest camps, Al-Nahda Square.

– The violence in Cairo sparks deadly clashes across the country, with the Muslim Brotherhood, from which Morsi hails, urging Egyptians to take to the streets to “stop a massacre.”

In the second city of Alexandria tear gas canisters rain down on a pro-Morsi march, amid repeated bursts of automatic gunfire.

In the central provinces of Menya and Sohag Morsi supporters torch Coptic Christian churches.

– The authorities declare a month-long state of emergency and a night-time curfew in Cairo and half of the provinces.

– Egyptian vice president and Nobel laureate Mohamed ElBaradei announces his resignation.

– In early evening, hundreds of supporters of Morsi are given safe passage out of the Rabaa al-Adawiya encampment through a security corridor. A security official says government forces are in “total control” of the camp and that clashes have ended.

– The authorities close indefinitely the Rafah border crossing with the Gaza Strip, the only gateway into the Hamas-ruled Palestinian territory that bypasses Israel.

– Islamists vow to rally from the Al-Iman mosque in the capital “to protest the death of their relatives”.

– Morsi supporters launch attacks on police posts in two provinces, killing at least two policemen, security officials say. Militants in the Sinai peninsula kill seven soldiers in an attack on a checkpoint, security officials and medics say.

– The interior ministry says it has instructed police to use live ammunition in dealing with attacks on government buildings and police forces.

– French President Francois Hollande summons Egypt’s ambassador to France and says that “everything must be done to avoid a civil war”.

Britain, Italy, Germany and Spain also summon the Egyptian ambassadors to condemn the crackdown.

Turkey calls for an urgent UN Security Council meeting, to discuss “a very serious massacre”.

UN rights chief Navi Pillay demands a wide-ranging probe into the crackdown.  US President Barack Obama says the United States has cancelled military exercises with Egypt and warns that Egypt had entered a “more dangerous path”.

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