Shaima El Sabbagh and Sondos Reda Abu Bakr: Protesters killed in Egypt on eve of #Jan25 uprising anniversary

AFP: A female demonstrator was killed in clashes with Egyptian police during a rare leftwing protest in central Cairo Saturday, the eve of the anniversary of the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak, an official said.

Shaima al-Sabbagh, who friends said was 34 and the mother of a five-year-old boy, died of birdshot wounds, a health ministry spokesman said.

Fellow protesters said she was hit by birdshot when police fired to disperse the march.

Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab said Sabbagh’s death was being investigated and vowed that “whoever committed a mistake will be punished, whoever he may be.”

A senior interior ministry official denied police had used birdshot to disperse the protest.

“No weapons such as birdshot or rubber bullets were used, it was a small protest that did not require the use of such weapons,” an aide to the interior minister, Abdel Fattah Osman, told AFP.

“Only two tear gas canisters were fired.”

The clash took place hours before state television aired a pre-recorded speech by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to mark the fourth anniversary of the popular uprising.

“I salute all our martyrs, from the beginning of January 25 (2011) until now,” said Sisi.

Al Jazeera: An Egyptian student was killed during clashes between anti-government protesters and residents in the coastal city of Alexandria, as demonstrations gathered pace days before the anniversary of the 2011 uprising.

The Freedom and Justice Party, the political wing of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, identified the dead woman on Friday on its Facebook page as 17-year-old Sondos Rida Abu Bakr and accused security forces of shooting her during a demonstration, Reuters news agency reported.

A security official in Alexandria said several people were wounded on Friday in clashes between protesters and local residents but denied that security forces had opened fire to disperse demonstrators.

At least 20 people were also arrested in Alexandria on Friday and 68 the previous day, security sources said.

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