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More than 440 wounded during clashes in Egypt

Military police have been shown in video footage dragging women by the hair, even stripping the shirt off one veiled woman, and ferociously beating, kicking and stomping on protesters.

Protesters throw rocks toward Egyptian military in front of the former building of the American University of Cairo
Protesters throw rocks toward Egyptian military in front of the former building of the American University of Cairo
Image: AP Photo/Ahmed Ali

MORE THAN 400 people have been wounded and 10 killed during three days of further violence in Egypt.

Egypt’s military sought to isolate pro-democracy activists protesting against their rule, depicting them as conspirators and vandals, as troops and protesters clashed for a third straight day, near parliament in the heart of Cairo.

At least 10 protesters have been killed and 441 others wounded in the three days of violence, according to the Health Ministry. Activists say most of the 10 fatalities died of gunshot wounds.

The fighting was sparked when troops sought to break up a sit-in outside the Cabinet headquarters.

Military police have been shown in video footage dragging women by the hair, even stripping the shirt off one veiled woman, and ferociously beating, kicking and stomping on protesters cowering on the ground.

In a statement posted on its Facebook page, the ruling military council on Sunday called the clashes part of a “conspiracy” against Egypt.

Seeking to depict the protesters as hooligans it also posted on the page footage of young men throwing rocks at a basement window of the parliament building.

The ruling generals have taken advantage of the growing frustration of many Egyptians over worsening economic hardships and tenuous security, blaming demonstrations, strikes and sit-ins for their predicament.

The tactic, coupled with the military’s efforts to stain the reputation of the youth groups behind Mubarak’s ouster, appears to have worked.

Protest leaders increasingly complain that they feel isolated in a society that has grown more concerned with making ends meet than political rights.

In Sunday’s clash, protesters and troops battled on two main streets off of central Tahrir Square.

Today’s renewed violence was also taking place as unofficial results from a second round of voting in parliamentary elections showed Islamist parties, led by the Muslim Brotherhood, continuing their dominance at the polls.

The third and final round of voting is slated for next month in nine of Egypt’s 27 provinces.

The clashes began early on Friday when one of several hundred peaceful protesters staging a sit-in outside the Cabinet offices near parliament was detained and beaten by troops.

The protesters began their sit-in three weeks ago to demand that the nation’s ruling military immediately step down and hand over power to a civilian administration.

Activists have been trying to drum up public sympathy for their cause by flooding social network sites with photos and video from the troops’ brutal assaults.

“Liars,” proclaimed a red headline on the front page of the independent Al-Tahrir newspaper, referring to repeated denials by the military council and military-appointed Prime Minister Kamal el-Ganzouri that no force or live ammunition were used against the protesters.

The paper ran a photo of the woman protester who was half-stripped by attacking soldiers.

Read: Crowds mark one year since fruit seller’s protest sparked Arab Spring>

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Associated Press

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