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Army separates warring groups ahead of showdown

Cairo: Ahead of the Friday showdown between protesters and the government in Egypt, army today rolled out tanks and positioned soldiers to separate warring pro-and anti-Hosni Mubarak demonstrators, who clashed leaving seven people dead and 700 injured in fresh violence.

Shortly after automatic gunfire hit the anti-government protesters at the historic Tahrir Square killing seven people, including three on the spot, tanks and armoured cars ferried rifle-wielding soldiers to line up between the clashing groups.

The pre-dawn firing apparently by Mubarak’s supporters appeared to be orchestrated to evict thousands of opposition supporters from the Square ahead of a massive rally tomorrow, also the day when the opposition deadline to the embattled President, who has been in power since 1981, to quit expires.

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