No fewer than 23 people have been killed in a gunbattle between two feuding tribes in southern Egypt, health authorities say.
The fighting which began on Friday between al-Halail and al-Dabudia tribes in the city of Aswan, erupted again on Saturday after a lull of few hours, media reported.
Automatic weapons and petrol bombs were used in the violence, leaving more than 30 people wounded and several houses ablaze, witnesses said.
The clashes made it difficult for ambulances to access the area to evacuate the dead and the wounded.
The city’s governor, Mustafa Youssri, called on the army to send troops to support police in ending the violence.
Youssri also ordered 17 local schools closed due to the unrest, state-run newspaper al-Ahram reported online.
The violence was triggered when members of both tribes placed “offensive” slogans against each other on local buildings, al-Ahram said, citing an unnamed security official.
“Security agencies are making intense efforts in cooperation with local community leaders to contain the crisis,” the official added.
Tribal feuds are common in the southern part of Egypt and are usually defused through mediation by local government officials.