By Aaron T. Rose
The Giza Governate Building complex on Haram Street was set alight on Thursday afternoon.
Members of the public outside the site claimed that supporters of the ousted president Mohamed Morsi had set fire to the building in protest.
The blaze raged for a number of hours, and was brought under control by the Fire Department, who used hoses and a number of fire engines to tackle the fire. The firefighters’ job was made more difficult with leaky hoses and one fire engine that succumbed to the fire.
Hundreds of anti-Morsi protesters crowded the complex’s courtyard and lined Haram Street, saying they are protecting the area from Morsi supporters and foreign interference.
Inside the walled compound, the complex’s main colonial-style building lay completely gutted, damaged by the fire. A motorcycle was burnt on the floor in the main reception area, and graffiti with “CC” – in reference to General Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi, the interim defence minister—and the star of david were spray painted on the outer walls.
Behind the main building, firefighters battled to keep fires under control in several of the complex’s office buildings.
At least one person was taken away by ambulance, suffering from unknown injuries.
This fire followed a day of violent crackdowns by Central Security Forces of sit-ins near Rabaa Al-Adaweya Mosque and in Al-Nahda Square, which claimed the lives of over 500 demonstrators and police personnel.