Egypt arrests Mubarak allies over camel charge

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 21, 2011 10:00 AM

CAIRO (Reuters) - The Egyptian police have arrested two members of Hosni Mubarak's National Democratic (NDP) Party accused of organizing violence against demonstrators during the uprising that swept him from the presidency.

The two NDP figures, both members of the now dissolved parliament, were arrested on suspicion of involvement in "bloody Wednesday," the state news agency reported.

It was referring to the events of February 2 when Mubarak loyalists mounted on camels and horses charged protesters, triggering a battle that was seen as a crucial moment in the 18-day uprising against the president.

The agency named the two as Abdel Nasser al-Jabari, a member of the lower house of parliament, and Youssef Khattab, a member of the upper chamber.

The camel and horse charge was part of an offensive by Mubarak supporters trying to dislodge protesters from Cairo's Tahrir Square. The protesters defended their position and public disgust at the incident galvanized more opposition to Mubarak.

The public prosecutor has also ordered the arrest of four former senior Interior Ministry officials on suspicion of conspiracy to murder by ordering the killing of protesters.

(Writing by Tom Perry)