Egypt govt slammed for spending $2.5m on teargas amid financial crisis

Last Updated: Sat, Feb 23, 2013 16:06 hrs

London: Various activists have slammed Egyptian government for purchasing 140,000 canisters of teargas worth 1.7 million pounds (around US $2.55 million) at a time when its foreign reserves are at critically low and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan has been delayed

Egypt's interior ministry made the emergency order at the end of January, according to records retrieved, the Guardian reports.

It came at the start of a week of civil unrest sparked by protests against President Mohamed Morsi, his Muslim Brotherhood, and police malpractice, it reported.

They also see it as yet another example of the government's unwillingness to rein in the police force, whose brutality was a major cause of the 2011 revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak, and whose behaviour has come under renewed scrutiny this year.

Teargas has been repeatedly used during protests this year, at times rendering it unsafe to navigate thoroughfares in downtown Cairo that lie several streets from the clashes.

At one point in January, Tahrir Doctors, a group of volunteer medics who treat protesters hurt in clashes, warned that teargas in Tahrir Square had reached dangerous levels, the paper reported.

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