Clashes have erupted in Cairo's Tahrir Square as supporters and opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi tried to wrest control of the iconic square in rival rallies.
The health ministry said on Friday at least 12 people were wounded as protesters showered stones at each other in some of the worst violence over the country's new leader.
The clashes started after Brotherhood supporters tore down a podium belonging to a group that was chanting anti-Morsi slogans, witnesses said.
Morsi's supporters, mainly his powerful Muslim Brotherhood movement, had called their rally to denounce this week's acquittals of Hosni Mubarak-era officials. His opponents, a coalition of liberal and secular leaning groups, had previously called their own rally to denounce Islamist control over a body drafting the new constitution, and Morsi's performance in office.
2. Forty-one hurt as Egypt's liberals and Islamists clash
(Reuters) - Opponents and supporters of Egypt's President Mohamed Mursi clashed in Cairo on Friday in the first street violence between rival factions since the Islamist leader took office.
Islamists and their opponents threw stones and bottles, and some fought hand-to-hand, showing how feelings still run high between the rival groups trying to shape the new Egypt after decades of autocracy, even though the streets have generally been calmer since Mursi's election in June.
The state news agency cited a doctor at a hospital near Tahrir saying 41 people had been injured.
A government is in place, but Islamists and liberals are at loggerheads over the drafting of the new constitution, which must be agreed before a new parliament can be elected.