Clashes expected next week in Egypt

June 20, 2013 at 9:21 AM
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LONDON, June 20 (UPI) -- Clashes are expected in Egypt on the anniversary of the inauguration of President Mohamed Morsi, a group monitoring journalist safety said Thursday.

Morsi became the first president elected by a democratic vote last year. His administration has faced domestic criticism for seeming to favor Islamic principles and for not doing enough to address economic woes. The international community, meanwhile, has been critical of a crackdown on civic organizations.

The International News Safety Institute issued an advisory Thursday warning of a high level of uncertainty related to personal security matters in Egypt.

The institute, which has headquarters in London, said murders, theft and armed robberies are all on the rise, though the reporting of such crimes may indicate the police are more responsive than before the revolution.

It warned protests planned for June 30, the first anniversary of Morsi's inauguration, may turn violent as his supporters clash with opposition figures.

"If the predicted violence does occur, the security forces may use robust tactics, such as tear gas and water cannons, to restore order," the warning said. "The police have also said that they may go on strike on June 30, which would mean that the army may have to step back onto the streets."

INSI said tensions may start to escalate in Egypt following the conclusion of Friday prayers June 28.

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