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Egypt Islamists arrested,protesters call mass demonstration

'We call for a million person march under the banner of 'Martyrs of the Coup' on Tuesday.'

Written by PTI | Cairo |
July 29, 2013 9:51:11 pm

Daring the military-backed government,supporters of deposed Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi have called for a “million person march” tomorrow against his ouster,even as police today arrested two top leaders of an Islamist party in a widening crackdown on protesters.

“We call for a million person march under the banner of ‘Martyrs of the Coup’ on Tuesday,” the Anti-Coup Alliance of Islamist groups organising the protests said in a statement.

Also today,pro-Morsi Wasat Party head Abul Ela Mady and his deputy Essam Sultan were both arrested in Cairo for involvement in killing protesters in recent violence.

In the worst violence seen since 61-year-old Morsi was deposed by the army on July 3,80 people were killed in clashes with the security forces on Saturday.

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However,the Brotherhood’s official website said at least 200 people had been killed and some 5,000 wounded.

Both men were arrested on charges of inciting violence,killing protesters and insulting Egypt’s judiciary.

Mady and Sultan were arrested in the Moqattam district of the Egyptian capital,and were then sent to Aqrab prison,where nine Muslim Brotherhood leaders are being held,state-run MENA news agency reported.


Prosecutors also ordered the arrest of Safwat Hegazy,a preacher known for his ties with the Muslim Brotherhood,on charges of inciting violence,after he led a march from Rabea al-Adaweya sit-in to Nasr Road which degenerated into deadly clashes with security forces.

Meanwhile,as part of international efforts to broker a peace between the two sides,EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton arrived here today for talks.

She will meet leaders of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood,head of the Egyptian armed forces Gen Fattah al-Sisi and interim President Adly Mansour.


In a statement,she said she would push for a “fully inclusive transition process,taking in all political groups,including the Muslim Brotherhood”.

Egypt’s interim president Adly Mansour yesterday issued a powder-keg decree making preparations for a possible “state of emergency,” the EGYnews website reported.

According to informed sources,the defence and interior ministers,as well as the intelligence chief,informed Mansour of “serious threats of terrorist attacks against state institutions”.

Military helicopters dropped leaflets on pro-Morsi protesters in Rabaa al-Adawiya earlier today and appealed to them not to approach military installations and units. “We call on everyone to cooperate and respond to the instructions of the armed forces personnel in order for the security and stability of the country. No violence. Do not sabotage. No bloodshed,” the leaflets read.

In a further warning,the National Defence Council,which includes members of the interim government and the military,warned yesterday of “firm and decisive” action against protesters who go beyond peaceful demonstration.


The moves come a day after Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim said he was waiting for the prosecutor general’s office to issue orders to disband the pro-Morsi protests.

Muslim Brotherhood supporters today said they staged three marches,including one targeted at the headquarters of military intelligence.


Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Gehad el-Haddaf was quoted by the BBC as saying that there was no intervention by the military and no confrontation.

He said the march “circled the building for a good 10 to 15 minutes with a lot of chants of ‘down with the coup'”. However,one report suggests many turned back before reaching the building.


The Muslim Brotherhood is continuing to demand Morsi’s return to office,with a large protest camp outside the eastern Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque and further west near Cairo University.

Morsi,who is facing criminal charges in many cases,was last seen in public on June 26 and has been detained along with senior aides of his Muslim Brotherhood party.

The security forces have been accused of using excessive force,but the interior ministry says protesters used firearms.

Egypt’s “Rebel” (Tamarod) campaign issued a statement yesterday saying they are highly concerned with comments made by Minister of Interior Mohamed Ibrahim that they understood as foregrounding the possible return of the notorious Mubarak-era state security apparatus.

In a press conference held by the interior ministry on Saturday,Ibrahim announced that departments of state security tasked with fighting extremism and monitoring political and religious activity,terminated after the January

25 Revolution,have been reinstated.

The bloodshed has thrown Egypt into deeper turmoil weeks.

The violence has claimed the lives of dozens and wounded hundreds since Morsi’s ouster from the presidency.

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First published on: 29-07-2013 at 09:51:11 pm

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