Three dead, 100 wounded in south Egypt clash: official

At least three people were killed and 100 wounded in two days of clashes between police and demonstrators in a town in southern Egypt’s New Valley region, a security official told AFP on Wednesday.

Police fired live rounds Tuesday when local people rioted in the oasis town of El Kharga, more than 400 kilometres (240 miles) south of Cairo, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Scores were wounded and three people died of their injuries on Wednesday.

The furious mob responded by burning seven official buildings, including two police stations, a police barracks, a court house and the local headquarters of President Hosni Mubarak’s ruling National Democratic Party.

The unrest in the country’s south was the latest indication that the frustration with Hosni Mubarak’s 30-year-reign has spread far beyond Cairo’s Tahrir Square, the epicenter of the massive two-week-old protests.

The central square saw its largest protests yet on Tuesday, fuelled in part by an emotional televised interview with Wael Ghonim, a 30-year-old Google executive and activist who was released after being detained for 12 days.

The youth-led protesters have said they will not give up the square, now a sprawling tent city, until Mubarak steps down.

The 82-year-old strongman has said he will not run in September elections but will finish his term, despite the unrest, which has sent Egypt’s economy into a tailspin and rattled autocratic regimes across the region.