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Over 100 detained for communal clashes in Egypt

More than 100 people have been detained for 15 days for questioning over Muslim-Christian clashes in Alexandria.

india Updated: Apr 18, 2006 11:11 IST

More than 100 people have been detained for 15 days for questioning over Muslim-Christian clashes in this city, where the violence has subsided but sectarian feelings remained high, a prosecutor and security officials said.

Prosecutor Sami Brek said 52 detainees were suspected of rioting, incitement, damage to property, and transgression of places of worship during the past weekend.

In a statement carried by the Middle East News Agency, he said another 50 people were being questioned over the riots.

On Monday night, Brek ordered the detention of the 50 for 15 days, security officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity, as they were not authorised to issue press statements.

Two people were killed and at least 40 were wounded in the clashes, which began Friday and continued through Sunday.

Calm returned to Alexandria's el-Asafrah district on yesterday. Shops reopened and the central Street 45 was full of people going about their daily business.

But a dozen security force members and plainclothes police stood guard outside the church of Saint Maximus, where worshippers were heard singing hymns.

Bihop Bemwah Ghali said he fears there is a lot of anger in the hearts of Coptic Christians in Egypt's second biggest city.

"There was a sort of a truce, but this is not the end of the crisis," Ghali said.