By VOA News
Hundreds of supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi clashed Monday night with security forces in Cairo while demanding his return to power.
Police fired tear gas at the Morsi loyalists, who retaliated by throwing rocks.
In an attempt to stop traffic, pro-Morsi demonstrators set up barriers and tried to cut off a bridge in Cairo, before security forces fired tear gas to drive them back.
The Muslim Brotherhood and other Morsi supporters have been maintaining a protest outside Cairo’s Rabia el-Adawiya Mosque, demanding that Egypt
’s first democratically elected president be returned to power.
These clashes marked the first in Cairo since security forces shot dead dozens of Morsi supporters a week ago. Brotherhood leaders have vowed to escalate their protests.
Demonstrations also are taking place in other Egyptian cities. Hundreds of thousands of people are participating in the protests across Egypt.
Earlier Monday, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns met in Cairo with leaders of the new military installed interim government, which is trying to move ahead with a transition plan.
Burns said the U.S. will not try to impose its model of democracy on Egypt, and that it recognizes only Egyptians can determine their future. He is the first senior U.S. official to visit since the Egyptian army removed Morsi nearly two weeks ago.
“My message has been simple: The United States
remains deeply committed to Egypt’s democratic success and prosperity. We want a strong Egypt, an Egypt which is stable, democratic, inclusive and tolerant,” he said.
He told reporters Egypt is in no danger of repeating the Syrian tragedy because its leaders “understand the dangers of polarization,” adding that the key to success is “ensuring a sense of inclusion at every stage of the political transition.”
The State Department said that in all of his meetings, Burns will underscore U.S. support for the Egyptian people, an end to all violence, and a transition leading to an inclusive, democratically elected civilian government.
The U.S. administration has been criticized both by Morsi supporters and opponents for what each side has perceived as support for the other.
Morsi has been held at an undisclosed location since his removal, while a number of senior Muslim Brotherhood members have been taken into custody. Authorities have not charged the former president with a crime, but they say they are investigating a series of complaints against him, including spying and wrecking the economy
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