"Violence has been ongoing in cities across Egypt since Friday, starting with clashes that broke out on the 25 January anniversary, when mass protests took place denouncing the Muslim Brotherhood's monopolization of power. Nine people were killed, mainly in Suez, where the army has been deployed. The 6 October Bridge was blocked off intermittently Saturday evening and the fighting also reached the Garden City Corniche near the Qasr al-Nil entrance and the Semiramis Hotel, all the way down to Simon Bolivar Square. Tear gas was heavy in the whole area. A security source said that the management of the three nearby hotels -- the Semiramis and Shepherd hotels on one side, as well as the Hilton Ramsis overlooking Abdel Moneim Riad Square -- were asked to close the gates and not allow anyone to enter or exit. A fire that broke out late Saturday at the Lycee School on Sheikh Rihan Street had been contained, the same street where clashes had been taking place throughout the day. A security source told Al-Masry Al-Youm that the fire ravaged three classrooms and the school's basement. There were also reports of a fire at the Misr Insurance office in Talaat Harb Square. " Al Ahram on-line
The Semiramis Intercontinental is one of Cairo's finest hotels. I have stayed there many times although I prefer the Marriott out on the Gezira.
The Semiramis was the scene many years ago of a massacre of Swedish tourists by Islamists. They were killed like sheep as they stood in line at the Reception Desk in the ground floor lobby. The hotel put in metal detectors after that.
The new Shepherd's and Ramses Hilton are also five star hotels.
These buildings are all in central Cairo, near Tahrir Square. The Semiramis is two or three blocks from the US Embassy.
These looters do not appear to have been Islamists. They wanted to burglarize the hotel.
The US is the sponsor of Egypt's "democracy."