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BREAKING: Tanks near palace as deaths mount in Egypt protests

December 6th, 2012
10:56 AM ET

Cairo (CNN) - The fallout from President Mohamed Morsy's sweeping power grab in Egypt has spiraled into more deaths, another key defection and a scene that resembles a war zone.

Tanks and armored personnel carriers rolled into the area near the presidential palace Thursday, trying to bring some calm to the country's latest center of turmoil.

Piles of rubble and burned cars littered the streets. The front doors of nearby storefronts were smashed in.

Five people have been killed and 446 injured in deadly clashes between pro- and anti-Morsy demonstrators outside the palace, the Egyptian health ministry said Thursday. At least 35 police officers are among the injured, the state-run MENA news agency reported.

Clashes flared Wednesday and early Thursday after a week of largely peaceful protests in Cairo. Supporters and critics of Morsy hurled Molotov cocktails, rocks and fireworks at each other in front of the palace.

Opponents are furious over Morsy's recent decree that gave his decisions judicial immunity until a new constitution is approved. They also denounced a proposed constitution - drafted by an Islamist-dominated council - that they fear will give him even more power.

But Morsy has said his decree was designed to protect the spirit of the popular 2011 uprising that drove former ruler Hosni Mubarak from power.


Filed under:  Arab Spring • Breaking News • Egypt • Middle East
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