Political violence erupts in Egypt's Nile Delta ahead of June 30
Politically driven clashes broke out between Muslim Brotherhood supporters and anti-Morsi protesters in the Nile Delta late on Wednesday. (AFP)
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Violent clashes between supporters and opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi have led to at least one death and scores of injuries in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura, Egyptian state television reported Wednesday evening.
Egyptian police have used teargas in an attempt to disperse the clashes, in which at least one person was killed and 225 injured, according to a health ministry source.
Khaled El-Khatib, head of the ministry's department for emergency and urgent treatment, said the victim – named Abdel-Hamid Sadek – had succumbed to chest and abdominal injuries after having been shot with birdshot.
According to reports on state television, birdshot, bladed weapons and petrol bombs have been used in the violence. Electricity was also cut in the area in what might have been an attempt by the authorities to end the violence.
Clashes erupted Wednesday afternoon after hundreds of members of the Muslim Brotherhood group, from which Morsi hails, staged a demonstration in support of the presidency outside a local mosque following afternoon prayers.
It remains unclear how the clashes started.
Eyewitness accounts vary on whether the demonstration was attacked by local residents or by "thugs" previously accused by the Brotherhood of attacking group members.
The street fighting in Mansoura broke out hours before an anticipated national address by President Morsi slated for 9:30pm, as the country braces for nationwide anti-government rallies on Sunday.
During the mayhem in the Nile Delta city, several people reportedly looted a local supermarket owned by prominent Brotherhood member Khairat El-Shater, throwing merchandise into the street.
Anti-Brotherhood crowds also set a microbus owned by the group alight.