EGYPT

Fighting kills three; civilian help sought

With water cannons and tear gas, Egyptian riot police battled on Friday with hundreds of rock-throwing supporters of ousted ex-President Mohammed Morsi in clashes across the country that left three dead, according to officials.

Authorities meanwhile unleashed a new tactic to contain protests, calling on large families to post armed men near the likely sites of demonstrations.

In at least two incidents on Friday, two small rallies quickly dispersed after pro-government civilians in pickup trucks fired machine guns into the air. - AP
LIBYA

Americans briefly held

Four U.S. military personnel investigating potential evacuation routes were taken into custody at a checkpoint and detained briefly by the Libyan government, a U.S. official said. No one was reported injured. A Defense Department official said the personnel were taken to the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli after their release. - AP

SYRIA

Radical fighters slain

Syrian forces ambushed members of an al-Qaeda-linked group on Friday, killing dozens near a historic Christian village north of Damascus. State TV said troops surprised fighters of the Jabhat al-Nusra, or Nusra Front, at dawn near Maaloula. - AP