Pressure grew yesterday on Egypt’s new leaders to release ousted Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi from detention as clashes between supporters and opponents of the deposed Islamist president left 10 people dead.
The deadly clashes which also wounded dozens broke out on Monday, raged through the night and were continuing yesterday, a day after Morsi’s family vowed to sue the military over his ouster.
At least six people were killed early yesterday when opponents of Morsi attacked supporters of the deposed president who were staging a sit-in near Cairo University, state media reported.
Morsi’s family told a news conference on Monday they will take legal action against the military for having “kidnapped” the elected president after he was deposed in a military-led coup on July 3.
Egypt’s new leadership says Morsi is in a “safe” place for his own good.
Calls for Morsi to be released have also been issued by the US, Germany, the UN and the EU which, on Monday, again called for the Islamist leader to be freed.
Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood movement has also vowed to sustain protests until his reinstatement and refuse to recognise the interim government installed by the military ahead of new elections early next year.
Yesterday’s violence came a day after Morsi’s supporters marched on the US embassy, setting off a gunfight with opponents in the nearby Tahrir Square that killed one protester.
Later in Qalyub, north of Cairo, street battles killed three people, one of them run over by a train as he tried to escape the violence.
As violence billowed, interim Egyptian President Adly Mansour appealed in a speech late on Monday for a “new page in the book of the history of the nation, without rancour, hatred and confrontation.”
However, Morsi’s detention, and subsequent arrests of senior Brotherhood leaders, have hardened his supporters against dealing with the new regime.
Morsi’s daughter Shaimaa Mohamed Morsi told reporters on Monday that the family would sue army chief, General Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, and also take legal action outside Egypt
“We are taking local and international legal measures against General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the leader of the bloody military coup, and his putschist group,” she said of the army chief.
She voiced dismay at “the silence of rights organizations and civil society over the crime of kidnapping the legitimate president,” whose election in June last year was widely regarded as Egypt’s first free vote for a leader.
The family held Sisi responsible for Morsi’s safety.
Morsi’s son Osama said the family had not heard from him since his overthrow.
“None of us has had any contact with our father since the afternoon of the coup on July 3,” he told reporters.