Story By: Alex Cope, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash
This is the moment Egyptian villagers protest outside a cemetery to prevent the burial of a doctor who died of coronavirus as cops reportedly fire teargas to disperse the crowd.
The incident took place in the village of Shubra al-Bahu in Dakahlia province in north-eastern Egypt as the doctor identified in reports by her initials as S.A.A., 64, was being buried in the local cemetery.
The doctor had reportedly caught coronavirus from her daughter who had contracted the virus on a trip to Scotland before her return to Egypt on 11th March, according to reports.
Reports state she was initially going to be buried in the village of Mit Amil, her birthplace, but local residents there forcibly prevented her burial, with 15 people arrested for ‘inciting disturbances’.
The doctor’s body was then taken to Shubra al-Bahu, the home village of her husband, but residents there also protested.
In the video, the villagers can be seen outside the local cemetery with security forces watching on.
The protesters, fearful over the spread of the virus, can be seen chanting and whistling and local media report the security forces worked with the medical authorities to try to convince the locals there was no risk involved in burying the doctor.
Her body had been sterilised and wrapped in three layers of cloth and leather to prevent any contamination.
Reports state the chief of the local health authority said he would bury the doctor’s body himself to show there was no risk but the residents still said no.
The security forces then dispersed the crowd using tear gas, according to reports, and the body was buried in a plot in the cemetery owned by the doctor’s husband.
Local media report 12 arrests were made in the incident.
Egypt has suffered 2,065 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 159 deaths, according to the latest figures from the Johns Hopkins University.
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