UN condemns Egyptian military

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UN human rights chief Navi Pillay has called for an independent investigation into violence in Egypt and said she deplored the killing of protesters by military and security forces.

‘I urge the Egyptian authorities to end the clearly excessive use of force against protesters in Tahrir Square and elsewhere in the country, including the apparent improper use of teargas, rubber bullets and live ammunition,’ Pillay said in a statement.

She added that ‘the actions of the military and security forces, instead of improving security and helping Egypt’s difficult transition to democracy, have once again simply served to inflame the situation.

‘There should be a prompt, impartial and independent investigation, and accountability for those found responsible for the abuses that have taken place should be ensured.’

Pillay noted media reports of unarmed protesters being shot in the head and many others being arbitrarily rounded up, and called on the authorities to ensure a peaceful environment in the lead-up to next week’s elections.

‘Instead, we are seeing another outbreak of violence by the state against its increasingly and legitimately angry citizens.’

The Egyptian army is using live rounds, rubber bullets and poisoned gas. Their conduct has not been condemned by the UK and US governments, who haven’t the slightest interest in the defence of Egyptian civilians.