Cairo police clash with Nile island residents, at least one dead, 56 injured

PUBLISHED ON MON, JUL 17, 2017 6:27 AM

Cairo police clash with Nile island residents, at least one dead, 56 injured

By Amina Ismail

 

tag-reuters-3.jpg

Egyptians shout slogans against the government during the funeral of Syed Tafshan, who died in clashes with residents of the Nile island of al-Warraq island, when security forces attempted to demolish illegal buildings, in the south of Cairo, Egypt July 16, 2017. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

 

CAIRO (Reuters) - At least one person has been killed and dozens injured in clashes between police and residents of a Nile island in Cairo, when security forces attempted to demolish illegal buildings, the ministry of Interior said in a statement.

 

The violence erupted when police arrived at al-Warraq island on Sunday morning to eradicate encroachments on state-owned land, the statement said.

 

"The forces were surprised by demonstrations by some of the trespassers, who had assaulted the forces by firing birdshots and throwing stones ... Which pushed the forces to fire teargas to disperse the protesters and to control the situation," the statement added.

 

At least 37 policemen and 19 residents were injured in the clashes, the statement said. Security forces withdrew from the scene to minimize losses, a police officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, told Reuters.

 

"The mission failed from A-Z ... there hasn't been proper coordination," he said.

 

The island residents say they built their houses on this land over 30 years ago.

 

"We were born on this island ... we have proof of ownership, our parents were born here.. they want to give it to the Emirates to build hotels," said Marzouk Hany, 20, butcher, as he was marching along with hundreds in the funeral of the man who was killed.

 

In May Egyptian president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi began a campaign to demolish thousands of buildings that were alleged to have been illegally built on state-owned land.

 

"There are islands in the Nile ... according to the law no one should be present on these islands," Sisi said in a speech in June. He ordered the authorities to make it a priority to reclaim the islands in the same speech.

 

About 90 thousand people live on the 1300 acres al-Warraq island, said Mahmoud Jaffar Salman, a former member of parliament to Giza, which the island is part of.

 

(Additional reporting by Mohamed Abdellah, Haitham Ahmed and Omar Fahmy; Editing by Greg Mahlich)

 
reuters_logo.jpg
-- © Copyright Reuters 2017-07-17
latest news from World

Commuter train crash in Barcelona station injures 48 A commuter train is seen crashed into a railway buffer in Barcelona's Francia station, Spain July 28, 2017 in this still image from a video obtained from social media. Courtesy of Felix Rios /via REUTERS MADRID (Reuters) - A commuter train...

READ MORE...

Pakistan's top court disqualifies PM Sharif from office Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif looks out the window of his plane after attending a ceremony to inaugurate the M9 motorway between Karachi and Hyderabad, Pakistan February 3, 2017. REUTERS/Caren Firouz ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistan's...

READ MORE...

EU citizens will still be allowed to come to live and work in UK after Brexit, Home Secretary revealsBy Gordon Rayner, political editor Jack Maidment, political correspondent  LONDON: -- EU citizens will still be allowed to come to the UK to live and work after Brexit as long as they register with...

READ MORE...

White House divisions on display with Scaramucci's comments White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci speaks during an on air interview at the White House in Washington, U.S., July 26, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The rifts inside President Donald Trump's White...

READ MORE...
sponsors