An American student has been stabbed to death during anti-government protests in Egypt, the US State Department has confirmed.
Andrew Pochter, from Chevy Chase, Maryland, was killed after being stabbed in the chest in the coastal city of Alexandria, where anti-government protesters stormed an office of the ruling Muslim Brotherhood.
A Facebook post on Saturday that appeared to be from Pochter’s family suggested he was in the country teaching English to children and improving his Arabic. The “R.I.P Andrew Driscoll Pochter” page had also been posted on by colleagues of Pochter at the US educational non-profit organisation where he was working.
The post read: “He went to Egypt because he cared profoundly about the Middle East, and he planned to live and work there in the pursuit of peace and understanding.”
“Andrew was a wonderful young man looking for new experiences in the world and finding ways to share his talents while he learned.”
Egyptian officials said he was carrying a small camera but it is still not clear why Pochter had attended the protest.
He was due to start his junior year at Ohio's Kenyon College and had planned to study abroad in Jordan next spring, according to the Facebook statement.
A statement from Kenyon College said Pochter was interning in Alexandria with AMIDEAST, an American non-profit organisation that runs education and development programs in the Middle East and North America.
A State Department spokeswoman confirmed that Andrew Pochter was killed on Friday in Alexandria.
“We extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends,” Marie Harf said. Harf said the US embassy in Cairo and the State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs were providing “appropriate consular assistance.”
The Muslim Brotherhood reported that eight of its offices had been attacked on Friday. Officials said more than 70 people had been injured during the clashes in the city, adding to growing tension ahead of mass rallies on Sunday aimed at unseating President Mohamed Morsi.
Additional reporting by agencies