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Cairo news: Tahrir Square protests and crackdown enter Day 4 (LIVE BLOG)

Egypt's military says they will not seek presidency. Check here for the latest news on the Cairo street protests.

10/22/11 9:16 AM ET / 4:16 PM CAIRO

Egyptian state television is reporting that Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, the commander-in-chief and head of the nation's ruling military council, will address the nation at some point today.

Meanwhile, violent street battles continue raging in the streets in between Cairo's Tahrir Square and Egypt's interior ministry, where the police are headquartered. Egyptian police continue to fire tear gas canisters and rubber pellets to disperse the crowds. Still, hundreds of protesters are defiantly charging the police lines, attacking with rocks, Molotov cocktails, and chunks of concrete.

Two attempts at calling a ceasefire between police and protesters, including one brokered by a nearby military officer, have failed at the last minute, erupting in violence as both camps stood almost face-to-face.

Here's the Telegraph on what the scene looks like:

UPDATE: 10/22/11 7:45 AM ET / 2:45 PM CAIRO


Egypt's stock exchange suspended trading on Tuesday, following a loss of more than 4 percent, according to an AP report published in Al-Masry Al-Youm:

The Egyptian Exchange’s benchmark EGX30 index had fallen by over 4 percent so far on Tuesday, its third consecutive day of declines as protests and violence in downtown Cairo raised questions about the country’s stability days before pivotal parliamentary election are supposed to be held.

Market rules call for trading to be temporarily suspended if the broader EGX100 index moves by more than 5 percent.


UPDATE: 10/22/11 6:28 AM ET / 1:28 PM CAIRO

The student newspaper at the American University in Cairo has tweeted a video of the American study-abroad students who were reportedly arrested in Cairo over the weekend.

AUC's Caravan tweeted the following on Tuesday:

Video of detained AUCians, some of whom are Americans. MoI says they were arrested for throwing Molotovs at police

Here's the video:

CNN has also updated their story on the three American detainees:

The three boys were throwing Molotov cocktails and had no passports on them when they were picked up," said Adel Saeed, a spokesman for Egypt's general prosecutor's office.

David Lynfield, deputy press officer in the U.S. Embassy said the "claims are being currently investigated."

Authorities described the three Americans as students and said one had an Indiana driver's license.

"They have been questioned by the police and will be further investigated today by the Cairo prosecutor," Saeed said.

UPDATE: 10/22/11 5:48 AM ET / 12:48 PM CAIRO

Three Americans have been arrested during the clashes in Cairo, CNN is reporting.

From CNN:

Three Americans were arrested Monday outside the Interior Ministry in Tahrir Square and are accused of throwing Molotov cocktails during the protests in Egypt, a local prosecutor said.

A public relations official at the American University in Cairo confirmed to GlobalPost that three American study-abroad students had been arrested at some point over the weekend, and that the school was working with the U.S. Embassy to investigate their detention.


UPDATE: 10/22/11 4:45 AM ET / 11:45 AM CAIRO

Egypt’s military rulers have failed to improved human rights conditions in the Arab world’s most populous nation, according to a new report published by Amnesty International.

The London-based human rights group said that Egypt’s Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) has, in some cases, a worse record of abuses than that of former president Hosni Mubarak.

"By using military courts to try thousands of civilians, cracking down on peaceful protest and expanding the remit of Mubarak's Emergency Law, the SCAF has continued the tradition of repressive rule which the January 25 demonstrators fought so hard to get rid of," said Philip Luther, Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Acting Director.

The Amnesty report comes out following a bloody weekend of clashes in Cairo, with at least 33 deaths and hundreds injured. Read the whole report here.


UPDATE: 10/22/11 4:22 AM ET / 11:22 AM CAIRO

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood released a statement Tuesday saying that they will not participate in any further protests "that may lead to more confrontations and tensions."

The Islamist movement also called on Egypt's ruling military to withdraw all security forces from central Cairo.

Now, it has become clearly evident that certain parties are intent on igniting the situation in Egypt’s Tahrir Square by attacking the demonstrators for three days running, with dozens dead and thousands injured. We therefore call for the rapid prosecution of all those who caused the heinous crimes that took place and were reported to the Attorney General. We also urgently call the government to stop the bloodshed by withdrawing the security forces from the bloody confrontation.

Read the whole statement here.


UPDATE: 10/22/11 3:59 AM ET / 10:59 AM CAIRO

Violent protests have raged in a small area of the downtown district in Egypt's capital, Cairo, for nearly 72 hours straight.  

Small-scale clashes between Egyptian police forces and around 300 protesters continued throughout the early morning on Tuesday.

Before dawn on Tuesday, some protesters managed to get within one city block of Egypt’s ministry of interior, a fortress-like headquarters for the police. Molotov cocktails were pitched into the lines of police, who responded by firing shotguns in the direction of the crowd. Several protesters fled the scene with critical injuries.

Here is video from the brief attack:

By late morning on Tuesday, intensified clashes between the two sides had resumed on the original front lines at Mohamed Mahmoud street. Police continued firing waves of tear gas to disperse the crowds.

Protesters, numbering in the thousands, responded with rocks and chants against the military-led government.

“Down with military rule!” screamed the swelling crowd.

Here is another video of the general scene on Mohamed Mahmoud - the epicenter of recent clashes - on late Monday and early Tuesday.