Supporters of Egypt’s deposed president Mohamed Morsi have called for a “million-person march” against his ouster after authorities warned of “decisive” action if protesters are considered a threat. Organisers of protests against the military’s overthrow of Morsi urged demonstrators to march on security buildings on Monday night and called a march for Tuesday. In a statement, the Anti-Coup Alliance of Islamist groups urged Egyptians “to go out into the streets and squares, to regain their freedom and dignity – that are being usurped by the bloody coup – and for the rights of the martyrs assassinated by its bullets.” The protest calls, which raises the possibility of fresh confrontations, comes after at least 72 people were killed at a sit-in in support of Morsi on Saturday morning.
Meanwhile, as seen above, pro-Morsi supporters have fortified their Rabaa encampment in Nasr City near where Saturday’s massacre occurred. Elsewhere, the Egyptian military continues to arrest Islamists and attempt to justify their violent crackdown:
But in a new report, Human Rights Watch emphasizes how nothing the protesters did could have possibly justified the level of the response by security forces:
“The use of deadly fire on such a scale so soon after the interim president announced the need to impose order by force suggests a shocking willingness by the police and by certain politicians to ratchet up violence against pro-Morsy protesters,” said Nadim Houry, deputy Middle East and North Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “It is almost impossible to imagine that so many killings would take place without an intention to kill, or at least a criminal disregard for people’s lives.” …
According to a doctor who was at the scene, the police began to fire teargas when the protesters were approximately 200 meters away. A skirmish ensued between the protesters and the police and men in civilian clothes, lasting for about two hours: protesters set cars on fire and threw rocks, while police fired birdshot and more teargas from their position near the bridge. The doctor told Human Rights Watch that after approximately two hours, live bullets were fired at the protesters from what appeared to be an elevated position, possibly from a nearby building. The timing was corroborated by two other witnesses. Fouad, another doctor working in the Rabaa field hospital, said, “The pattern of injuries we saw here was completely the opposite of the Republican Guard. In the Republican Guard incident [on July 8, 2013] it was mostly random live fire, it only looked like 10 percent [of those killed] were shot by snipers. This time it was like 80 percent were shot by snipers targeted from above.”