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Man From Cairo In Colorado To Teach, Shares Insight On Egypt Violence

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Dr. Bassem Hass (credit: CBS)

Dr. Bassem Hass (credit: CBS)

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DENVER (CBS4) – This violence in Egypt may seem like a world away to most Americans, but not for Dr. Bassem Hassan who is from Cairo and just arrived in Colorado last week.

Hassan, his family and friends have been sharing violent videos from Egypt. He has been in Cairo all summer and is back in Colorado to teach at the University of Colorado Denver in the political science department.

While in Cairo, Hassan participated in the anti-Mohammed Morsi, anti-Muslim Brotherhood demonstrations.

“The thing is, of course, I feared (for my life), but I was more concerned about the future of my country,” Hassan said.

On Friday local residents battled with protesters in the Muslim Brotherhood “Day of Rage.” The Muslim Brotherhood vowed that its supporters would take to the streets in retaliation for the government’s crackdown — and they did. The police warned they would use deadly force to stop them.

“Everyone in Egypt knew that the confrontation was coming. No one is surprised,” Hassan said.

Hassan said it was not a confrontation between pro-democracy protesters and dictatorship. He said it’s more like conflict between Egyptian and Arab nationalists and Islamists, and it’s conflict over the identity of the state and society.

“The United States should stay out of it,” Hassan said.

So far it has as the daily bloodshed continues, and more violence is expected.

The Muslim Brotherhood and supporters for the former president Morsi have called for a solid week of mass demonstrations.

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