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Egyptian army, residents protect property from looters

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Residents of Cairo have joined the army to protect public and private property in the Egyptian capital, engulfed by looters, state TV reported on Saturday.

Residents of Cairo have joined the army to protect public and private property in the Egyptian capital, engulfed by looters, state TV reported on Saturday.

The Egyptian military, deployed on the streets of Cairo, has called on the residents to stop the looting and "protect the nation, protect Egypt, protect themselves," the report said.

Troops are currently controlling major important sites, including ministries, television, bridges and foreign embassies.

Earlier on Saturday, Egyptian army managed to secure Cairo's famed Egyptian Museum from attackers. However, reports said several artifacts, including mummies, were damaged.

The looting, which is ongoing despite the curfew, forced Egyptians to form vigilante groups armed with sticks to protect their homes, shops and even hospitals.

Police, that used to guard the important buildings, have disappeared from the streets leaving banks and shopping malls abandoned.

Only in Cairo, at least two shopping centers and dozens of small shops have been looted.

Anti-government protests continued for the fifth day on Saturday in Egypt with crowds of tens of thousands demanding President Hosni Mubarak step down after three decades in power.

Some 100 people have been killed and hundreds injured in the riots, Al Jazeera reported.

CAIRO, January 29 (RIA Novosti)

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