CAIRO: Two weeks after Sadat Metro station was reopened after almost two years of closure, the Egyptian authorities closed the station Tuesday for “security reasons” on the second anniversary of the June 30 anti-Muslim Brotherhood protests; security forces are on high alert nationwide after the Attorney-General was assassinated Monday.
The station, located beneath the iconic Tahrir Square, was closed per orders from top security bodies, an anonymous security official told Youm7 on the condition anonymity Tuesday. The station is planned to be closed for one day, the source said, adding that it may be closed for a longer time if necessary.
The central metro stop was closed from August 2013, when the pro-Morsi sit-ins in Cairo were violently dispersed, to June 17 for “security reasons.”
Security forces have been on alert in all public squares nationwide in anticipation of possible violent protests or attacks during the first anniversary of June 30, particularly after the assassination of Barakat in a car bomb attack.
“Breaching the law or sabotage acts that target the security and stability of the country will be firmly countered,” a security official at the Ministry of Interior said Tuesday, adding that “any possible protests will not be allowed.”
Security forces have intensively been deployed in the vicinity of prisons where Muslim Brotherhood leaders and supporters are jailed. Militants stormed a number of prisons during the January 25 Revolution in 2011, freeing Brotherhood, Hamas, Hezbollah and Iranian prisoners.
On June 18, Brotherhood member Gamal Abdel Sattar threatened on Turkey-based Mekameleen channel that “Egypt will keep on burning until having retribution against [President Abdel Fatah] al-Sisi, the Grand Mufti, and the Al-Azhar Imam.”
Security forces intensified their presence in Cairo districts of Matariya, Ain Shams and Helwan and in Giza districts of Faisal, Haram and Kerdasa where Brotherhood protests are mostly staged.
The Ministry of Interior called on citizens to report any suspicous objects on railways, metro stations and at transmission towers.