Al Jazeera is reporting:

Egyptian police have fired tear gas at opposition protesters demonstrating against Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi’s drive to hold a snap referendum on a controversial draft charter, as the country plunges deeper into crisis.

Live television footage showed that some protesters broke through police lines and got too close to the presidential palace.

Al Jazeera’s Rawya Rageh, reporting from Cairo said: “We saw thousand of people surrounding the palace on all four corners, outnumbering the police and getting close to the presidential walls.”

“Opposition has announced there’s going to be a sit-in outside the palace,” she said.

“The message coming out of here is that the president has failed to prove to Egyptians that he is the president of all of Egypt, as opposed to a leader in the Muslim Brotherhood group.”

She said “Morsi is preparing for the referendum, he is under a lot of pressure from the opposition, but he does not seemed to be phased by the protests”.

Thousands had taken to the streets waving Egyptian flags, chanting for the downfall of the president and denouncing the Muslim Brotherhood, from which Morsi emerged, for having “sold the revolution” that toppled Hosni Mubarak last year.

The strikes were part of a planned campaign of civil disobedience that could bring in other industries.

Read more at Al Jazeera.

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