Thousands of Egyptian demonstrators clashed with police to protest a decision by local authorities to end distribution of flour rations in the northern coastal town of Burullus, security sources said. The state-owned al-Ahram daily said some 8,000 protestors sealed off a road for seven hours, using burning tyres to stop traffic.
Police used teargas and batons to disperse the crowds and three protesters were hospitalised after inhaling teargas, security sources said. Police made 30 arrests, according to the newspaper. One security source said rubber bullets had been fired at the crowd.
Security sources said earlier the protests were caused by bread shortages, but subsequent reports said the protestors, mainly local fisherman, were angered by the local authority's decision to end direct distribution of flour rations in favour of supplying bakeries with the flour.