At least 10 people have been reported killed in the Egyptian capital Cairo, where security forces have stormed Tahrir Square to clear out protesters who are demanding that the military authorities speed up the handover of power to a civilian government.
The European Union has condemned the violence, with foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton calling on authorities to halt violence against protesters and ensure a democratic transition.
The violence comes a little more than a week before Egyptians are scheduled to start voting in parliamentary elections on November 28 -- the first such vote since the February ouster of longtime ruler Hosni Mubarak.
In the violence November 20, reports said hundreds of army soldiers and police used tear gas, rubber bullets and batons to evict several thousand protesters from Tahrir Square -- the center of the protests that led to the end of Mubarak's 30-year rule.
Egypt's state-run news agency quoted the Health Ministry as saying 10 people had been killed, as well as some 1,700 wounded in the past few days of unrest.
At least two people were reported killed in violence on November 19.
The protesters say they fear that the provisional military rulers who took over after Mubarak are trying to retain their grip on power.
The ruling generals deny having any such ambitions.
compiled from agency reports
In a statement read out on state-run television, the government has offered assurances that the unrest will not derail the political process, saying parliamentary elections will start as scheduled on November 28.