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Egypt: Morsi declares 30-day state of emergency in Suez Canal cities

Morsi has declared a state of emergency and curfews for violence-stricken Port Said, Ismailiya and Suez.

Egypt state of emergency Enlarge
Egyptian protesters throw stones towards riot policemen during clashes near Cairo's Tahrir Square on January 27, 2013. Clashes killed at least 31 people in Egypt's Port Said as violence raged in several cities including the capital following death sentences passed on 21 football fans after a riot. (Mohammed Abed/AFP/Getty Images)

Mohamed Morsi has declared a state of emergency in Egypt's Suez provinces after heavy violence erupted over the weekend, leaving over 50 dead. 

A 30-day state of emergency and curfews have been set for Ismailiya, Suez, and Port Said, where death sentences handed down over football riots led to protests though the weekend, the Associated Press reported

"I have said I am against any emergency measures but I have said that if I must stop bloodshed and protect the people then I will act," Morsi said in an address on state television, Sky News reported. "If I must, I will do much more for the sake of Egypt. This is my duty and I will not hesitate." 

The curfews will take effect Monday at 9 p.m. local time, and run until 6 a.m. the next morning, Al Jazeera English reported

Violent clashes continued in Port Said, where mass funerals for Saturday's dead escalated on Sunday. Protesters and police are reportedly exchanging fire, according to Ahram Online

The army has also reportedly been dispatched, according to Ahram.

GlobalPost correspondent in Cairo Erin Cunningham tweeted: 

"I instructed interior ministry officials to strictly deal with whoever threatens the people and public and private institutions," Morsi said in his statement. "Everybody should be aware that Egypt's institutions are capable of defending the country against any threats." 

More from GlobalPost: Port Said: Funerals held as deadly clashes continue

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/middle-east/egypt/130127/egypt-morsi-declares-state-emergency-suez-canal-port-said