CAIRO Dec 6 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 sparked by Mursi's decision last
month to expand his powers.
A Reuters witness said some of the hundreds of Mursi backers
who had camped overnight around the palace perimeter had
started leaving before the deadline.
In its statement, the Republican Guard said that following
"unfortunate events" around the palace it was "banning the
gathering of any demonstrations in the vicinity of
establishments belonging to the president of the republic".
Several tanks and armoured personnel carriers had been
placed around the palace on Thursday morning and barbed wire
barricades erected across a major road leading to the palace to
separate the two sides. Other barriers had also been erected.
Opponents of Mursi on the spot had earlier said that more
protesters would arrive in the afternoon. There was a brief
spate of stone throwing mid-morning on Thursday but the scene
had otherwise been calm for hours.