Al-Azhar U. expels Egypt students for protest role

Al-Azhar U. expels Egypt students for protest role
Tue Apr 1, 2014 21:29:27

Prominent Egyptian al-Azhar University has expelled more than 24 students on charges of taking part in protest rallies against the military-led interim government.

The university said on Monday in a statement that 25 of its students were expelled for their alleged role in a recent violent protest on campus in the capital, Cairo.

The university also said it will harshly punish any student proved to be involved in protests anywhere on university grounds.

The expelled students participated in the March 30 protest against the death of two fellow students who were killed during clashes with security forces during an anti-government demonstration on campus a day earlier.

The deadly clashes broke out when protesters were attacked after they gathered to denounce the presidential candidacy of former Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

Al-Azhar has seen almost daily anti-government demonstrations that frequently turn violent since the military ouster of President Mohamed Morsi last July.

Last week, Sisi, who led the overthrow of Morsi, announced his resignation as defense minister in order to run for presidency.

Egypt’s electoral commission has announced that the first round of the presidential polls is scheduled for May 26-27 with results expected by June 5.

State institutions and media are all geared toward Sisi’s candidacy, a situation which ,according to analysts, undermines the chances of a fair competition for any other candidate.

Political parties and figures have repeatedly called on the army to stay out of politics.

Egypt has been experiencing unrelenting violence since the country’s first democratically-elected president, Morsi, was ousted on July 3, 2013.

Amnesty International says 1,400 people have been killed in the political violence since Morsi’s ouster.

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