Egyptian protest turns violent outside palace

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Egyptian protesters chant anti-Muslim Brotherhood slogans during a rally in front of the presidential palace, in Cairo, Egypt, Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2012. Egyptian riot police beefed up security around the presidential palace Tuesday ahead of a massive rally planned by activists protesting the Islamist leader's assumption of nearly unrestricted powers and a draft constitution hurriedly adopted by his allies. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)

CAIRO (AP) — Police have fired tear gas to stop protesters from approaching the presidential palace in Cairo as tens of thousands take to the streets to demonstrate against the assumption of nearly absolute powers by the nation's Islamist leader.

The violence erupted when protesters pushed aside a barricade topped with barbed wire several hundred yards from the palace walls. Police fired tear gas, and then retreated. There were no immediate reports on casualties.

Tuesday's march comes amid rising anger over a hurriedly adopted draft constitution by President Mohammed Morsi's allies and decrees giving him sweeping powers. Morsi called for a referendum on the draft constitution on Dec. 15.