Egyptian military tightens security as anti-coup protests continue

Soldiers block streets as protesters rally under the banner 'The coup is terrorism'

Supporters of Egypt's ousted president Mohamed Morsi chant slogans during a protest in Cairo on Tuesday.
Khalil Hamra/Associated Press

Egypt's government tightened security across the country Tuesday following a wave of new protests by Muslim Brotherhood supporters, who are demanding the reinstatement of ousted president Mohamed Morsi.

The military-backed government blocked access to Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square -- where anti-coup protesters camped for six weeks before a deadly military crackdown on Aug. 14 dispersed them -- as thousands of protesters rallied under the banner "The coup is terrorism."  

Tuesday's protests are the second countrywide actions to take place in four days. Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood also held demonstrations on Friday, which drew crowds in dozens of towns and cities, including at least 10,000 people in Cairo.

The new protests marked the end of a brief lull following the Aug. 14 crackdown, during which hundreds of Morsi supporters were killed and many more arrested.

Muslim Brotherhood leaders have called for continued protests across the country. On Tuesday, antigovernment demonstrators carried pictures of those killed in the government's crackdown, while others chanted slogans including "Revolution, revolution, the revolution will continue" and "Down, down with military rule."

Egypt's military responded in familiar fashion -- blocking access to popular meeting points in large cities and sending in troops to arrest and disperse protesters. Reports of violence in Cairo were limited, but seven were killed in clashes on Friday.

Egypt's government has also begun cracking down on pro-Morsi supporters in other ways. On Tuesday, the government sentenced 52 citizens to prison for clashing with the military in Suez following the July 3 coup. One person was sentenced to life in prison, the harshest punishment given out by the new government since Morsi -- who also faces trial for inciting violence against the military -- was deposed.

The government shut down four television stations viewed as being pro-Morsi, including one affiliated with Al Jazeera.

Al Jazeera and wire services

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