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The New Arab reported the man, said to be 30-year-old taxi driver Ashraf Mohammed Shaheen, started criticising the country’s high prices and poor living conditions before dousing himself in petrol and setting himself alight in Alexandria, in northern Egypt.
In the horrifying video, onlookers can be seen rushing towards the man to put out the flames, beating them with clothing and spraying a fire extinguisher.
WARNING: The video under the spoiler contains GRAPHIC IMAGES.
His condition is currently unknown.
Social media users have compared the incident to Mohamed Bouazizi, a Tunisian street vendor who set himself on fire and died in 2010 after being harassed by police who confiscated his wares – sparking protests which led to the Arab Spring.
Egyptians have experienced a sharp rise in the price of essentials since President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took power in 2013 – leaving an increasing number of people unable to afford basic commodities.