53 killed in Egypt over the weekend
Published: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 02:10
Violent clashes over the weekend in Egypt erupted between demonstrators and the interim military government. According to the Egyptian Health Ministry, 53 people were killed, and 271 people were injured during protests by supporters of the former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.
Morsi was Egypt’s first democratically elected president before being removed from office in July by the Egyptian Armed Forces. The believed force behind this weekend’s protest is the Muslim Brotherhood, the right-wing political party which has demanded the re-establishment of the Morsi government, according to CNN reports. The demonstrations on Sunday took place on the anniversary of the 1973 war with Israel. The majority of the disputes took place in Cairo, but victims were also killed in Giza, Minya and Beni Suef.
Sam Houston State University political science professor Masoud Kazemzadeh, Ph.D., said there is hesitation of many in regards to the Muslim Brotherhood regaining power.
“Many Egyptian democrats, feminists, nationalists and leftists feared that Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood were moving to create a dictatorship,” Kazemzadeh said.
The disputes on Sunday lead to a planned attack against the state satellite station in Cairo which resulted in two injuries, but no fatalities, according to Reuters.
The continued violence by the Muslim Brotherhood has taken place despite the fact that in September, the political party’s activities were banned and its assets seized by an Egyptian court. This position was reaffirmed today when the court ordered the Muslim Brotherhood be dissolved due to this weekend’s protests, according to USA Today.
The Muslim Brotherhood gained power after the 2011 Egyptian revolution and removal of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak when the first democratic elections took place.
Kazemzadeh said this summer, the military took over temporary control of the Egyptian government in a feat that many would describe as a military coup.
“When the military overthrows a government by force, it is a coup,” Kazemzadeh said. “According to American law, the U.S. government could not provide financial assistance to a government if it came to power through a coup. That is the reason the Obama administration has not classified the toppling of the Morsi government as a ‘coup.’”