Egyptian protesters clash with riot police in Cairo 311 AP.
(photo credit: AP)
Hundreds of anti-government protesters returned Saturday to the streets of central Cairo, chanting slogans against Hosni Mubarak just hours after the Egyptian president fired his
Cabinet and promised reforms but refused to step down.Overnight, the government called in military
forces and by morning the army had replaced police in guarding
government buildings and other key areas.
The sight of protesters pouring into Cairo's downtown Tahrir Square for a fifth day indicated Mubarak's words in a televised speech shortly after midnight had done little to cool the anger over Egypt's crushing poverty, unemployment and corruption.
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Police opened fire on a number of the protesters according to eyewitness reports, al-Jazeera reported.
Al-Jazeera also reported that one of its correspondents saw 23 bodies at the morgue in the Egyptian city of Alexandria following protests there on Friday.
Several tanks were
parked in the vast Tahrir Square, but soldiers did not intervene in
Saturday's protest there. Not far from the square, the army sealed off
the road leading to the parliament and Cabinet buildings.
the Nile, smoke was still billowing from the ruling party's
headquarters, which protesters set ablaze during Friday's unrest, the
most dramatic day of protests since the unrest began on Tuesday.
Saturday, mobile phone services were restored after a
government-ordered communications blackout aimed at stopping Friday's
protests. Protesters have used text messaging and social networking
websites to coordinate demonstrations.
Vodafone and Mobinil cell
phone services were working Saturday morning, about 24 hours after they
were cut. Internet service appeared to remain down.
Friday that the Egyptian government had ordered all mobile telephone
operators to suspend services "in selected areas" of the country.
Britain-based Vodafone Group PLC is one of the largest mobile phone
operators in Egypt, with more than 25 million subscribers.