Dec. 7 - Tens of thousands of Egyptian protesters surged around the presidential palace and the opposition rejected President Mohamed Mursi's call for dialogue to end the crisis that has polarized the nation. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT - NO REPORTER NARRATION STORY: Tens of thousands of Egyptian protesters surged around the presidential palace on Friday and the opposition rejected President Mohamed Mursi's call for dialogue to end a crisis that has polarized the nation and sparked deadly clashes. The Islamist leader's deputy said he could delay a Dec. 15 referendum on a constitution that liberals opposed, although the concession only partly meets a list of opposition demands that include scrapping a decree that expanded Mursi's powers. "The people want the downfall of the regime" and "Leave, leave," crowds chanted after bursting through barbed wire barricades and climbing on tanks guarding the palace of Egypt's first freely elected president. Their slogans echoed those used in a popular revolt that toppled Mursi's predecessor Hosni Mubarak in February 2011. Vice President Mahmoud Mekky said in a statement sent to local media that the president was prepared to postpone the referendum if that could be done without legal challenge.