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The police stormed the Tahrir Square early Tuesday morning - at dawn - in an attempt to clear the square of demonstrators / protesters.


A 15-year-old boy was shot by the police - and he was seriously injured.


Yesterday - Monday, 19.12.11 - 3 people were killed by the police.

Since last Friday, 14 human lives have been lost.


Egyptian police and military shot at demonstrators and used tear gas at the Tahrir Square in Cairo. At least 13 were killed during the latest unrest that started last Friday.


The US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton criticized the Egyptian authorities: "Women have been beaten and humiliated in the same streets where they put their lives at risk for the revolution some months ago". It is not a cultural thing, it is criminal! "


Danish text-TV / DR1 on 20.12.11



Latest news (Danish TV2 News, live at 10:10pm): The military council has published this statement: "The military council regrets / is sorry for the humiliation of women".

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Hillary Clinton criticized the Egyptian security forces for beating up a female demonstrator / protester who is very religious and who was wearing a Muslim veil. During the action her blue bra became visible. Afterwards Danish television (a correspondent from Danish channel DR1) tried to track down the woman or at least find out what happened to her.


According to DR1, the woman is okay physically, but not mentally. She is upset after having been beaten up and after having being shown on telly partially undressed (her blue bra).

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  • 1 month later...




Last night, i.e. on 1 February, 2012 there was violence in Port Said in Egypt in connection with a football match between 2 clubs with political and violent supporters. The supporters were pro-Mubarak and pro-Revolution respectively.


The violence broke out in Port Said, where the local team met a team from Cairo. Port Said won (home), and then the violence broke out. Result: 73 (later corrected to 74) killed and hundreds injured.


Another match was stopped by the referee who had heard about the unrest in Port Said. That caused unrest, and the stadium was put on fire.


45 were arrested after the deadly fights.


It was reported that several victims had been thrown out from the tribunes. Police / security forces were standing close to this scenery, but did nothing or left!!


The military has promised a thorough investigation.


It is said that fans of the visiting (and losing) team were among the leaders of the Arab Spring. So maybe last night's event was a revenge from the army / military.



German text-tv / ARD text: The ruling / governing Military Council has declared some days of mourning and promised to investigate into what happened. The security chief in Port Said has been sacked because the police did not intervene. Maybe they will also examine whether the local security forces at the stadium in Port Said opened the gates so that supporters of the fallen Mubarak regime could attack supporters of the revolution.


This event may also result in the population asking for restoration of "law and order".


I wonder whether this was allowed to happen so that the military had an excuse to stay in control of Egypt.

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2 February 2012 Last updated at 19:52 GMT


Egypt football violence: Tear gas during Cairo clashes


Demonstrators angered by the deaths of 74 people after a football match in the city of Port Said on Wednesday have clashed with police outside the Egyptian interior ministry in Cairo.


Hundreds have been injured, state-owned Egyptian TV reported.


Earlier, the Egyptian prime minister announced the sackings of senior officials in Port Said and at the Egyptian football association.


Funerals of some of the victims took place in Port Said.


Wednesday's riot began when fans invaded the pitch after a football match involving top Cairo club al-Ahly and the Port Said side al-Masry.


Slogans and stones


In Cairo, people gathered in the streets around Tahrir Square, the focal point of last year's protests which led to the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak.


Demonstrators, many of them al-Ahly supporters known as Ultras, used metal barriers and vehicles to close the square.


Thousands then marched to the interior ministry, some 500m (547 yards) away. Some chanted slogans against Egypt's military rulers, while others threw stones.


Police responded with tear gas, causing hundreds to run away.


Motorcycles ferried the injured from the scene as ambulances were unable to get through.


Channel 1 of Egyptian TV, which is state-owned, said 382 people had been injured, of whom 266 were taken to hospital, while the remainder were treated on site.


TV pictures from Cairo showed crowds outside the barricades which surround the interior ministry.


Earlier on Thursday, parliament met in emergency session, beginning with a minute's silence.


Prime Minister Kamal al-Ganzouri told MPs the head of Egypt's football association had been sacked and the board dissolved, with its members referred to prosecutors for questioning.


Port Said's director of security and the head of investigations were suspended and are now in custody, Mr Ganzouri said.


The BBC's Jon Leyne, in Cairo, says there is a mood of extreme bitterness. Many supporters believe police were incompetent, or actively provoked the unrest.


Police in Egypt have been keeping a much lower profile since last year's popular protests.


Meanwhile, the Muslim Brotherhood - which has emerged as Egypt's biggest party in recent elections - blamed ex-President Mubarak's supporters for the violence.





Wyre Davies


BBC Middle East correspondent



Young, poor and unemployed - many of the Ahly football fans caught up in the violence on the terraces in Port Said also took part in the battles for Tahrir Square. What they want are jobs and the opportunity to escape their predicament. What they hate are privileged and powerful symbols of authority.


Internet forums and blogs are full of conspiracy theories, blaming the generals for deliberately allowing Ahly fans to be attacked. The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt's biggest political movement, also accused the military of fomenting unrest to prevent the peaceful transfer of power.


That seems far-fetched. All we know for sure is that poorly paid and poorly trained riot police failed to keep apart two sets of football fans with a history of violence and mutual hatred.


After the overthrow of President Mubarak, you might expect everyone to now come together, preparing for a new era. But the reality is that Egypt is still a country in turmoil.

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From Danish TV2 news:


2 demonstrators / protesters killed in Egypt - shot by the police in order to disperse a crowd. Thursday evening the crowd tried to get into a police station in the port town of Suez.


Wednesday's tragedy at a football stadium in Port Said has triggered a lot of anger in Egypt. Thousands have been in the streets to express their unsatisfaction with the military rule.





3 February 2012 Last updated at 13:52 GMT


More Cairo clashes after Port Said football deaths


Protesters have clashed with security forces in Egypt's capital Cairo for a second day, amid anger over the deaths of 74 football fans on Wednesday.


Police fired tear gas at stone-throwing crowds outside the interior ministry.


A soldier died from injuries received in Thursday's clashes in Cairo, state media said. Two people were shot dead in unrest in Suez, also on Thursday.


Many Egyptians blame the authorities for failing to protect fans at a stadium in the city of Port Said.


Hundreds were injured in fighting between security forces and protesters across the country on Thursday.


Most of the dead were believed to be supporters of Cairo's al-Ahly team, who were attacked after losing a match to Port Said side al-Masry.


A group of hard-core al-Ahly fans known as the "ultras" have accused the authorities of allowing the killings to happen.


They say the authorities wanted revenge because the ultras were among those battling the police during last year's revolution that ousted strongman leader Hosni Mubarak.


Anger over the deaths has combined with widespread frustration at the pace of reforms undertaken by the interim military rulers.


Early on Friday, protesters and security forces clashed outside the interior ministry, which is seen by protesters as an unreformed institution dominated by Mr Mubarak's supporters.


A doctor at the scene told the Associated Press that one person had been killed.


Protester Wael Nawara told the BBC's Network Africa programme that many middle-ranking officers loyal to the former president were still in charge at the ministry and were "conspiring against revolution".


"There have been many calls throughout the last few months of restructuring the ministry of interior to bring the officers who are responsible for earlier deaths to trial, but nothing really has changed much in the behaviour of the ministry," he said.


The BBC's Yolande Knell in Cairo says protesters have spent the night dismantling concrete security walls that were erected around the ministry after a previous outbreak of unrest late last year.


Protesters are planning several marches across the city later, and there will be special funeral prayers at Tahrir Square for those who died at the football match.


Thousands gathered outside the ministry on Thursday and became embroiled in angry clashes with security forces. Officers used tear gas to disperse the crowds.


The health ministry said more than 1,000 protesters were injured, some with broken bones, most suffering from tear gas inhalation. Some 54 police officers and soldiers were also reported injured.


The unrest has now spread across the country, and two people were shot dead in Suez as a crowd of hundreds attempted to overrun a police station.


The government has dismissed several senior officials in response to the football deaths.


Port Said's director of security and the head of investigations were suspended and are now in custody.





Yolande Knell


BBC News, Cairo



Hundreds of al-Ahly football fans carried flags and wore their scarves for Friday prayers outside the club, but this was a sombre occasion to remember Wednesday's dead. Afterwards, they marched to Tahrir Square - where they have been joined by supporters of their arch-rivals, Zamalek.


There are several thousand young men at the latest protests in central Cairo. It appears families have stayed away for fear of violence.


On the side streets behind the interior ministry, clouds of tear gas can be seen. There is a constant din from the sirens of ambulances heading to the scene to remove the injured.


Anger is directed at the ruling generals. Cries go up of "the people demand the removal of the marshal" - a reference to Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, who heads the ruling military council.


Demonstrators want a faster transfer to civilian rule.


Wider Egyptian society worries about the continuing state of insecurity and some people believe that protests like this one are not helping.

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Latest news on 3 February 2012:


The protesters tried - without success due to police intervention - to enter the Interior Ministry.


A government building (i.e the Tax Ministry) opposite the Interior Ministry in Cairo is on fire, and demonstrators are fighting the police - according to Egypt's state-owned TV Friday evening.


According to the Italian news agency, AGI the demonstrators forced their way into the building and have plundered it for furniture and other equipment that was used for construction of barricades.


TV2 News on 3 February

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http://www.bbc .co.uk/news/world-middle-east-16867276


3 February 2012 Last updated at 23:11 GMT


More Cairo clashes after Port Said football deaths


At least four people have been killed in the latest unrest in Egypt, amid anger over 74 deaths after a football match in Port Said on Wednesday.


Many Egyptians blame the authorities for failing to protect fans.


Egypt's military rulers issued a statement calling for the country to unite and return to stability.


A building opposite the ministry which houses the property tax authority was set on fire, state TV reported.


A demonstrator and a soldier died on Friday in the clashes in Cairo as police fired tear gas at stone-throwing crowds. At least two people were also killed in Suez.


Ambulances and motorcycles ferried many of the injured to field hospitals.


The health ministry said 1,051 people were injured on Friday, the AFP news agency reported.


In its statement, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf) said Egypt was passing through "the most dangerous and most important phase in Egypt's history".


Revenge for revolution?


The latest bout of unrest began on Wednesday, after a pitch invasion in Port Said, when Cairo's visiting al-Ahly side were attacked after losing to the local al-Masry side. Seventy-four people died and more than 1,000 were injured.


Most of the dead were believed to be al-Ahly supporters. Hardcore fans - known as "ultras" - have accused the authorities of allowing the killings to happen.


They say the authorities wanted revenge because the ultras were among those battling the police during last year's revolution that ousted strongman leader Hosni Mubarak.


Anger over the deaths has combined with widespread frustration at the pace of reforms undertaken by Egypt's interim military rulers.


On Thursday, about 10,000 protesters clashed with police outside the interior ministry in Cairo. More than 1,000 were injured, the health ministry said.


Some 54 police officers and soldiers were also reported hurt.


Spreading unrest


By Thursday night, the unrest had spread across the country. Two people were shot dead in Suez as a crowd of hundreds attempted to overrun a police station.


On Friday, protests resumed outside the interior ministry, where at least one protester was reported dead. A soldier also died from injuries sustained on Thursday, state media said.


The demonstrators say they do not want to storm the ministry, but to hold a sit-in in front of it, the Associated Press reports.


One of the demonstrators, who gave his name as Ahmed, told the BBC: "We need to remain peaceful, and right now we can't.


"If people go to the interior ministry, they are attacked by security forces. The protesters are peaceful; they aren't attacking anyone, but we can't win like this," he said.


In Alexandria, a protest march headed for the regional offices of the military government.


Protester Wael Nawara told the BBC's Network Africa programme that many middle-ranking officers loyal to the former president were still in charge at the ministry and were "conspiring against revolution".


"There have been many calls throughout the last few months of restructuring the ministry of interior to bring the officers who are responsible for earlier deaths to trial, but nothing really has changed much in the behaviour of the ministry," he said.


The government has dismissed several senior officials in response to the football deaths.


Port Said's director of security and the head of investigations were suspended and are now in custody.



German ZDFtext (text-TV): Presidential election demanded by protesters


After 2 days of deadly unrest the protesters demand presidential elections right now - and not in June as scheduled. The protesters also demanded that the Military Council should step down immediately so that a new head of state could be elected. The newspaper "Al-Tahrir" ran this headline: "Egypt wants a president".


The plan was to make a new constitution at first and then to elect a new president in June.


The protests continued Saturday for the third day in a row after the tragedy at a football match in Port Said on Wednesday when 74 people were killed.

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All Saturday Egyptian security forces in the cities CAIRO and SUEZ have been busy fighting furious demonstrators / protester with teargas.


It is the third day in a row with massive unrest in Egypt.


Since Thursday 12 people have lost their lives - 5 in Cairo, 7 in Suez. More than 1,500 are injured according to reports from the Egyptian health authorities according to Ahram Online.


The unrest was revived after a football match last Wednesday when 74 people were killed.


Source: Danish text-tv on channel DR

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For the fourth consecutive day, protesters and police were fighting at the Interior Ministry in Egypt's capital, CAIRO.


The protesters demand that the military gives up its power and holds a presidential election very soon.


In order to underline their demands, they threw stones at the policemen standing at the Interior Ministry, and the police force responded with teargas.


7 people have been killed here since last Wednesday as a football match in Port Said developed into deadly violence costing 74 human lives.


Source: Danish text-TV on TV channel DR1





5 February 2012 Last updated at 15:01 GMT


Egypt 'to put on trial foreign NGO workers'


Egypt says it is to put on trial at least 40 people - including Americans and other foreigners - over the funding of non-governmental organisations.


Egypt's ruling military council has accused foreign groups of funding street protests against them.


It has raided the offices of several NGOs and banned a number of foreign staff from leaving the country.


Washington has warned it could review US aid to Egypt unless Cairo respects the rights of NGOs.


The announcement came on a fourth day of violent street protests in Egypt amid anger at the authorities' perceived inability to prevent a riot at a football match last week that left 74 people dead.


Security forces fired tear gas at the thousands of rock-throwing protesters who were marching on the interior ministry in central Cairo.


Silencing critics?


There are conflicting reports as to the exact number of people to stand trial, with the AFP news agency quoting a source as saying the figure is 44.


They are accused of "setting up branches of international organisations in Egypt without a license from the Egyptian government" and of "receiving illegal foreign funding," the AFP reports.


One of the 19 Americans to stand trial is, according to the Associated Press, Sam LaHood, the son of Transport Secretary Ray LaHood.


Mr LaHood heads the Egyptian office of the International Republican Institute (IRI) and was among several foreign workers banned from leaving Egypt just over a week ago.


The IRI and the National Democratic Institute (NDI), loosely associated with the US Republican and Democratic parties, were among 17 US-based and local foreign-funded groups whose offices were raided by prosecutors in late December.


Egyptian prosecutors said at the time they were acting on evidence suggesting some groups were violating Egyptian laws, including by not having permits.


But Cairo's action has widely been seen as an attack on free speech and an attempt by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces' (SCAF) to silence critics of its attempt to put down ongoing street protests.


On Saturday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reiterated Washington's warning that aid to Egypt would be reviewed.


The Associated Press also reports that five Serbs, two Germans and three non-Egyptian Arab nationals are among those to stand trial.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Latest from EGYPT in relation to this thread:




19 February 2012 Last updated at 14:55 GMT


Egypt presidential election: Decision on date delayed


Egyptian election officials have failed to confirm the date of the first presidential election since the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak.


An election commission briefing only expressed hope the process could be over by the end of May.


The commission chairman told local TV the problem lay in organising the expatriate vote.


Mr Mubarak stepped down on 11 February last year after 18 days of street protests in which hundreds were killed.


The military took over but has faced continuing unrest from protesters demanding an earlier transfer of power.


Parliamentary elections have already been held and a new assembly dominated by Islamist parties held its first session earlier this month.


Transition pressure


The BBC's Jon Leyne in Cairo says confirmation of a date in June had been expected but after a long preamble, the commission only expressed hopes about the timetable.


He says the delay suggests there may be a behind-the-scenes battle over the timing of returning to civilian rule.


Commission chairman Faruq Sultan said on the Nile News channel that the delay was because of problems organising the vote of Egyptian expatriates and that the foreign ministry had asked for more time.


Mr Sultan said nominations for president still had to be in by 10 March and the timetable for polls would be announced before then.


According to rules set by a referendum last year, the president will serve for four years and be able to serve two consecutive terms.


Earlier, election commission member Ahmed Shams el-Din had told Egyptian media: "The election will start in the first days of June and will end in the last week of June if there is a run-off."


The ruling military - the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf) - headed by Field Marshal Tantawi, has been under pressure to bring forward the election date to May.


But it had warned it would not bow to demands to speed up the transition process, amid democracy activists' threats of a campaign of protests.


The Scaf has promised to hand over power after the presidential elections but activists fear it will try to retain its influence.


Mr Mubarak is on trial accused of ordering the killing of demonstrators, charges he denies.

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  • 2 months later...

Latest from Egypt (souce: Danish TV2 News Live):


Again clashes in Egypt's capital Cairo - at least 20 human lives lost. Several - up to 168 - people injured.


A protest demonstration against the military was attacked close to the Defense Ministry (Department) in Cairo. It is unclear who attacked the demonstration.


It seems that salafists were protesting against the military rule and were attacked by some people (maybe policemen or soldiers not wearing uniforms). Some soldiers arrived, but they only watched the scenery without intervening.


The Islamists / salafists are angry that their top candidate was not allowed to run for president because "his mother had double citizenship".


Egypt's latest Prime Minister - a top general - has been allowed to run for president. Originally all people with connection to Mubarak such as former PM, and vice president & security chief were not allowed to run.


So it seems controversial that the former Prime MInister has now been allowed to run. If he gets elected, then the military will continue to have a strong position with a top general as President.


According to SVT (Swedish text-TV): Tonight Egypt's military council announced that it could hand over power to a civilian rule directly if there is a clear winner in the first round of the presidential election on 23 + 24 of May.

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Hmm... sounds like a turn for the worse in Egypt, though I believe all who are not responsible for the totalitarian conditions under Mubarak ought to be allowed to run, granted they were not directly involved in the repression that lasted since Sadat's assasination.

Any candidate ought to be allowed to run if they qualify for the basic requirements, democracy is about the people's choice, not the old hard-liners setting up their cronies to again take power - better to allow the electorate to decide, it's the right thing to do methinks.

Still the nile crocodiles lurking in the shallows it seems...

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Egyptian clashes continued Saturday resulting in 2 deaths and 130 injured according to Egyptian medical sources to the news agency AFP.


170 were arrested after the clashes.


Source: Danish TV2 News live plus text-TV

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  • 3 weeks later...



They were sentenced for killing demonstrators / protesters during last year's revolution in Egypt.


The policemen were accused of having killed several hundred protesters last year during the revolution that led to President Hosni Mubarak's being overthrown.


2 other policemen were sentenced to 1 year (probation).


10 policemen were acquitted.


Source: Norwegian NRK News

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2 June 2012 Last updated at 19:52 GMT


Protests erupt in Egypt over Hosni Mubarak verdicts


Huge crowds have gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square to protest against the verdicts on Egypt's ex-President Hosni Mubarak and his co-defendants.


Although Mubarak got life in prison for complicity in the killing of protesters in last year's uprising, the acquittal of key security officials sparked fury.


Egypt's ex-interior Minister Habib al-Adly was also sentenced to life.


But correspondents say a verdict that was meant to bring closure for Egypt is in danger of reopening old wounds.


Protests were also held in Egypt's second city Alexandria, as well as in Suez and Mansoura.


But the biggest demonstration is being held in central Cairo's Tahrir Square, the focus of last year's demonstrations that ultimately toppled Mubarak.




The BBC's Yolande Knell at Tahrir Square says crowds are repeatedly chanting "illegitimate", referring to the verdicts handed down on Saturday.


There is particular anger the acquittals of the officials - four high-ranking interior ministry chiefs accused of complicity in the deaths of protesters, as well as two regional security chiefs - are a sign that there has been little reform, our correspondent says.


But, she adds, many others have poured onto the streets out of depression at the current political situation.


Many of Egypt's revolutionaries are bitterly disappointed by the choice they now face - between a Muslim Brotherhood candidate, Mohammed Mursi and Mubarak's last prime minister, Ahmed Shafiq.


The Muslim Brotherhood - the main opposition force under Mubarak's rule - condemned the verdict.


In a press conference Mr Mursi said that if elected he would form a team to re-investigate protesters' killings. Mr Shafiq said that the verdicts "must be accepted",


Scuffles in court


The 84-year-old former president is the first former leader to be tried in person since the start of the Arab Spring in early 2011.


Announcing the verdicts, the judge then said Mubarak and Adly had failed to stop security forces using deadly force against unarmed demonstrators.


In his preamble, Judge Ahmed Refaat insisted the 10-month trial had been a fair one.


He spoke of the Mubarak era as "30 years of darkness" and praised what he called "the sons of the nation who rose up peacefully for freedom and justice".


Mubarak and his two sons were acquitted on separate charges of corruption. But his sons, Alaa and Gamal, are to remain in detention because they are to go on trial on charges of stock market manipulation.


After the verdict, scuffles erupted in court. Outside the court, the sentencing was initially greeted by celebrations from relatives of those killed, but joy soon turned to anger when news of the acquittals spread.


State television reported that the former leader at first refused to leave the helicopter as he was being transferred to his new prison, and that he then suffered from severe health problems. He has reportedly been admitted to the prison hospital.


Tora prison is where a number of figures from the former government are serving jail sentences for corruption.


Mubarak, who ruled the country from 1981 to 2011, had faced a possible death sentence over the killing of about 850 protesters.


The first leader toppled during the Arab Spring was Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia, who was found guilty in absentia of drugs and gun charges in July.


Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was killed by rebels in October. Yemen's Ali Abdullah Saleh received immunity from prosecution after handing over power in November.



The verdicts and sentences


Hosni Mubarak: Guilty of conspiring in killing of protesters - life imprisonment; not guilty of corruption


Alaa and Gamal Mubarak: Not guilty of corruption


Former Interior Minister Habib al-Adly: Guilty of conspiring in killing of protesters - life imprisonment


Four senior interior ministry officials - Abd El Rahman; Adli Fayed; Ahmed Ramzy; Ismail al-Shaer: Not guilty of charges of complicity, instigation and providing assistance in the murder and attempted murder of protesters


Hussein Salem, business tycoon: Not guilty of corruption


Two Greater Cairo security directors - Osama al-Marassy and Omar Faramawy: Not guilty of damage caused to Egyptian property and the economy

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  • 2 weeks later...

After Mubarak's verdict he was transported to a prison, but there were problems with his heart so he ended up in the prison's hospital.


His heart had stopped and had to be re-started 2 times.


So reading yesterday's and today's news (see below), I wonder if the only real result of the revolution in Egypt was that they got rid of Mubarak 1½ years earlier as his life seems to come to an end very soon.


Today's news:




16 June 2012 Last updated at 08:15 GMT


Egypt starts presidential election run-off


Egyptians are voting in a two-day run-off election to choose their first freely elected president.


Mohammed Mursi, head of the Muslim Brotherhood's political wing, is up against Ahmed Shafiq, former President Hosni Mubarak's last prime minister.


The ruling generals have vowed to hand over power to the winner by 30 June.


But correspondents say many who took part in last year's revolution find the choice uninspiring and some have called for a boycott or spoiled ballots.


As polls opened on Saturday morning, there was little sign of the long queues or enthusiasm that characterised the first round, or the parliamentary polls which took place between November and January.


"The revolution was stolen from us," merchant Nabil Abdul Fatah told the Associated Press outside a polling station in Cairo's Imbaba district.


He said he planned to vote for Mr Shafiq.


"We can easily get rid of him if we want to, but not the Brotherhood, which will cling to power."


The build-up to this weekend's run-off has been marred by a Supreme Constitutional Court decision that parliament had to be dissolved.


On Thursday, a panel of judges - appointed by Mr Mubarak - ruled that the law governing Egypt's first democratic elections in more than six decades was unconstitutional because party members were allowed to contest seats in the lower house reserved for independents.


Mr Mursi's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) won about 100 of its 235 seats in the People's Assembly by running candidates for individual seats. The ultraconservative Salafist Nour party also enjoyed similar success in seats designated for independents.


If parliament is dissolved swiftly by the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf), whoever wins this weekend's presidential run-off could take office without the oversight of a sitting parliament, and without a permanent constitution to define his powers or duties.


A 100-member assembly appointed by parliament earlier this week to draft the new constitution may also be dissolved.


Islamist, liberals and scholars denounced the ruling as a "coup", saying they feared the ruling generals would take back legislative power.


"This series of measures shows that the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, the head of the counter-revolution, is adamant to bring back the old regime and the presidential elections are merely a show," six parties and movements said in a joint statement.


The BBC's Lyse Doucet in Cairo says the ruling generals insist they are moving Egypt towards civilian rule.


And with some newly restored powers of arrest and interrogation, they are warning any effort to disrupt the run-off vote will be dealt with firmly, our correspondent adds.


On Wednesday, the justice ministry granted soldiers the right to arrest civilians for trial in military courts until the ratification of a new constitution.


'Return stability'


On Friday, the Muslim Brotherhood vowed to win the presidency despite the signs of opposition within both the military and judiciary, which is overseeing the vote.


"Isolate the representative of the former regime through the ballot box," said a statement referring to Mr Shafiq, who also served as head of the air force and minister of aviation during Mr Mubarak's 29 years in power.


The Brotherhood warned that the progress made since the president was forced to step down was being "wiped out and overturned".


Mr Mursi meanwhile sought to reassure the military and its supporters within the electorate that he would work closely with the generals.


"As president, they will be in my heart and will get my attention... they will never do anything to harm the nation," he said.


His opponent meanwhile told a rally that the court rulings were "historic" and that the "era of political score-settling" had ended.


On Friday, Mr Shafiq promised to "address chaos and return stability".


He came second in last month's first round, in which turnout among the 52 million eligible voters was only 46%. Official results gave Mr Mursi 24.8% and Mr Shafiq 23.7%.


The 13,000 polling stations, spread across Egypt's 27 governorates, are due to open on Saturday and Sunday at 08:00 (06:00 GMT) and close at 20:00 (18:00 GMT), but voting is likely to be extended on both days.


Security will be tight, with some 400,000 soldiers and police deployed on the streets.


Final results from the Higher Presidential Election Commission (HPEC) are due by 21 June, but are expected to arrive much earlier. Partial results from the first round were declared within 24 hours.



Who is in charge?


Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf) has run Egypt since Hosni Mubarak was forced to step down in February 2011


Parliament: Elected between November 2011 and January 2012. Dominated by Muslim Brotherhood but declared illegitimate by Supreme Constitutional Court


Presidency: second round between Islamist Mohammed Mursi and former Mubarak PM Ahmed Shafiq to go ahead on 16 and 17 June. President will be elected with no constitution in place


Supreme Constitutional Court: highest judicial power; judges appointed under Hosni Mubarak

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