Malaysian embassy prepares 27 safe houses in Cairo

Egypt's health ministry says 623 people were killed and thousands wounded in the worst day of civil violence in the modern history of the most populous Arab state. Malaysian students have been advised by the embassy not to share any political opinions on the situation there with Egyptians as even some of their university professors could be supporters of either side.

PETALING JAYA - The Malaysian embassy in Cairo has identified 27 "safe houses" for students in the event the Egyptian conflict escalates.

Charge d'affaires Shaiful Anuar Mohammad said the "safe houses" were basically student hostels which had been identified as locations far from the conflict areas.

"I would say we can accommodate around 2,000 students if we have to move them," said Shaiful Anuar.

He said the student hostels belonged to the various Malaysian state governments that were bought and registered on their behalf by the embassy.

He said embassy officers had also been deployed to the airport to assist students arriving from Malaysia, as some of the flights were near, or during, the 7pm to 6am curfew time.

"The officers will accompany them if they arrive at night during the curfew as no one is allowed to travel during that period.

"We also offer temporary shelter for students who need to head to other towns but cannot reach in time before the curfew starts," he said, explaining that the curfew had been imposed in 14 out of Egypt's 27 governorates.

Shaiful Anuar also said it was a relief that Tuesday's military operations against protesters did not occur near areas where the students lived.

He added that Malaysians in Egypt were strictly following the rules set by the Egyptian authorities.

He said the embassy had advised students not to share any political opinions on the situation there with Egyptians as even some of their university professors could be supporters of either side.

Egypt unrest