Amid uneasy calm in Cairo, prime minister says some were paid to protest
updated 12:28 PM EDT, Sun September 16, 2012
- NEW: Some confessed to getting money to protest at U.S. Embassy, Hesham Kandil says
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- Riot police push back protesters from the U.S. Embassy and Tahrir Square
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Cairo, Egypt (CNN) -- Egypt's prime minister said some of the thousands involved in days of protests near the U.S. Embassy got paid to participate, state news reported Saturday, the same day riot police managed to force demonstrators from the area.
Prime Minister Hesham Kandil said "a number" of those involved in the tense, sometimes violent protests, which began Tuesday, later confessed to getting paid to participate, according to the state-run Middle East News Agency. He noted, too, that some of the demonstrators were acting on their own and weren't paid to vent their anger against the United States over an inflammatory anti-Islam film that was privately produced in that country.
Kandil did not say whether the government knew or suspected who paid the demonstrators, according to the MENA report.
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Pakistani demonstrators beat an effigy of Florida pastor Terry Jones during a protest against an anti-Islam film in Lahore on Monday, September 24. More than 50 people have died around the world in violence linked to protests against the low-budget movie, which mocks Islam and the Prophet Mohammed, since the first demonstrations erupted on September 11. See more of CNN's best photography.