Egypt military orders demonstrators away from palace

CAIRO Thu Dec 6, 2012 6:49am EST

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CAIRO Dec 6 (Reuters) - Egypt's Republican Guard, which deployed around the presidential palace on Thursday, said demonstrators must evacuate the area by 3 p.m. (1300 GMT), the presidency said in a statement.

Opponents of President Mohamed Mursi and his Islamist supporters clashed on Wednesday night and Thursday morning during rival demonstrations that were sparked by Mursi's decision last month to expand his powers.

A Reuters witness said some of the hundreds of Mursi's backers who had camped overnight around the palace perimeter had started leaving before the deadline.

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