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Two men torch themselves in Egypt: officials

A man set himself ablaze today in Cairo and another in Alexandria, Egyptian officials said, apparently following the example of a young Tunisian whose action sparked revolution in his country.

world Updated: Jan 18, 2011 18:53 IST

A man set himself ablaze on Tuesday in Cairo and another in Alexandria, Egyptian officials said, apparently following the example of a young Tunisian whose action sparked revolution in his country.

The incidents follow a similar one in Cairo on Monday in which a man poured fuel on himself and set himself on fire on a busy street in front of the People's Assembly.

He was hospitalised but expected to be released in a day or two, officials said.

In Tuesday's incident in Alexandria, a 25-year-old man set himself ablaze, suffering third degree burns, a security official said, adding he was unemployed and suffering mental problems,

Another official reported earlier Tuesday that a man set himself alight outside Egypt's government headquarters in Cairo. He was only slightly injured and taken to hospital.

The latest self-immolation bids brought to nine the number of people who have set themselves ablaze in the past few weeks.

The fiery protests began in Tunisia on December 17 when 26-year-old Mohamed Bouazizi set himself ablaze. His death sparked an uprising and led to Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali fleeing the country after 23 years in power.

Five of the later protests took place in Algeria which had also been the scene of violent protests over rising prices, twinned with unemployment.

In the latest in the North African country, a 36-year-old unemployed man set himself on fire near the Algerian frontier with Tunisia in the El Oued region, Algerian newspapers reported.

Another copycat immolation attempt also took place in Mauritania with a man burning himself outside the presidential offices in the capital Nouakchott.