Coptic Orthodox Christians
Coptic Orthodox Christians carry a blood-splattered image of Jesus as they demonstrate against Saturday's bomb attack in front of the Coptic Orthodox Church of the Two Saints in Alexandria January 2, 2011. REUTERS

Human Right Watch (HRW) has warned of a cover-up by the Egyptian military following an investigation launched after the killing of more than two dozen demonstrators, mostly Coptic Christians, an incident which has put the spotlight on Egypt's ruling Military Council's harsh tactics.

However, HRW has now called for an independent investigation of the killings that took place in front of Cairo's state TV building in the Maspero district.

Soon after the protests shocking footages showing military vehicles running down protesters emerged and state sponsored television was accused of encouraging violence towards the demonstrators while covering up the state's forces actions.

Now the right group had called on authorities to transfer investigation of the case from military to civilian prosecutors.

"The only hope for justice for the victims is an independent, civilian-led investigation that the army fully cooperates with and cannot control and that leads to the prosecution of those responsible," the HRW said in a statement.

Egypt's military council made up of top army generals took control of the country in February, following the stepping down of Hosni Mubarak.

Soon after the council led by Mohamed Hussein Tantawi Soliman pledged to plan for an elected civilian government and after much delay, parliamentary elections have now been set for November.

Tensions between the military and civilians have however continued to increase as many are dissatisfied with the slow pace of change and while many expected the lift of the state of emergency, the government declaration is still in place.

Protests have repeatedly been held with demands including calls for more democracy and freedom, new economic and social policies and religious minorities such as the Christian Coptic have also demanded for more protection and rights.

They also called for the abolition of a law that forbids Christians from building or repairing churches without receiving special permission from the regime.

Activists have criticised the military council for leading a crackdown on protesters during its time in power and the deaths of the Christian protesters appear to corroborate those claims.

Generals have blamed the October deaths on a group of provocateur, allegations reminiscent of a certain Syrian President also accused of leading a brutal crackdown on protesters, but accounts from witnesses revealed demonstrators had largely been peaceful.

The regime has now been accused of encouraging sectarian divide to cover up for the actions of the militaries and shielding them from blame.

The HRW statement reflects fears by activists that an investigation led by the military council would also seek to protect officers responsible.

More than 28 people were reportedly arrested after the killings but activists maintained that most of those arrested are Christians while no arrests of soldiers have been reported.

"The generals seem to be insisting that they and only they investigate the Maspero violence, which is to ensure that no serious investigation occurs," said HRW spokesman Joe Stork.

"The military has already tried to control the media narrative, and it should not be allowed to cover up what happened on October 9."

The group also want an investigation into whether the military manipulated the media and the state television coverage during the incident, which hit said "may have amounted to incitement to violence."

Despite ousting their long-feared 'Pharaoh', Egyptians still have to endure state-sponsored violence, leading many to question the 'revolution'. Many of the top leaders in the army served under Mubarak and worked with him.

However, with new parliamentary elections set for 28 November, more changes are set to take place in the near future and Egyptians have vowed to fight for their rights and demands, a warning their future leaders should take seriously.