The looters entered the museum from above as tourism police and other Cairo residents protected the main entrance of the building.
The 109 year old museum is home to tens of thousands of artifacts and is the world’s largest collection of Pharaonic antiquities, including the majority of the King Tutankhamen collection.
Zahi Hawass, chairman of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, stated, “I felt deeply sorry today when I came this morning to the Egyptian Museum and found that some had tried to raid the museum by force last night.”
This latest violence occurred as President Mubarek had earlier ordered troops and tanks to enter Cairo and impose a curfew to control protestors demonstrating against the current Egyptian government and President Mubarek. Those protesting had ignored the curfew to set numerous buildings ablaze over night.
Al-Jazeera and CNN had collectively reported crowds estimated at 50,000 demonstrating in the streets, including many women and children.
BBC had also reported that an explosion had seriously damaged a state security building in Rafah, located about 9 miles (15 kilometers) west of Cairo.
Watch a brief raw video depicting the violence and chaos in Cairo here.