News / Middle East

Egypt Braces for New Round of Protests

A supporter of ousted Egypt's President Mohammed Morsi cries during a protest near the University of Cairo, Giza, July 5, 2013.
A supporter of ousted Egypt's President Mohammed Morsi cries during a protest near the University of Cairo, Giza, July 5, 2013.
VOA News
Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood called for mass protests Friday against the military-backed ouster of President Mohamed Morsi.

The Brotherhood is part of an alliance of Islamist parties calling for peaceful protests to follow afternoon prayers across the country.

Until now, the atmosphere on the streets has been largely celebratory since Morsi was forced out by the military following large opposition protests.

He was replaced by Adly Mansour, a top judge who was sworn in Thursday as interim president -- a move that was quickly rejected by the Brotherhood.

Islam Abdel-Rahman, who is on the the foreign affairs committee of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, told VOA that his group will not take part in any military-led political process. 

Key Dates in Egypt

  • February 11, 2011 - President Hosni Mubarak resigns after weeks of massive protests and clashes
  • January 21, 2012 - The Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party wins almost half of Egypt's parliamentary seats
  • June 24, 2012 - Mohamed Morsi becomes Egypt's first freely elected president
  • November 22, 2012 - Morsi grants himself sweeping powers, sparking protests
  • July 3, 2013 - The army removes Morsi from power and suspends the constitution
​But he says his group is calling for strictly peaceful protests against the move.

"We believe in peaceful means of defying this military coup," Abdel-Rahman said. "We don't believe in taking up arms or something like this. We still believe this country can be managed by political means."

He also rejected regional comparisons that some have made to other countries that experienced widespread unrest following military takeovers.

"Egypt is not like Pakistan. Egypt is not like Algeria," he said. "Egypt is Egypt and people are very confident and determined that we can give an example of a peaceful challenge to an armed coup."

Friday's protests are seen by some as a test of whether the Islamist faction still has the popular support that brought it to power in a series of elections held since the ouster of authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak in 2011.

There were no signs of mass violence by mid-day Friday. Still, there were fears of retaliation, possibly by fringe Islamist elements, in response to what some consider a military coup against their elected leader.

Early Friday, security officials said "Islamist gunmen" attacked several military and police checkpoints in the lawless northern Sinai, killing an Egyptian soldier and wounding at least two others.

Egypt's military is calling for reconciliation and playing down concerns of a revenge campaign against the Muslim Brotherhood. A military spokesperson Thursday said no arbitrary measures will be taken against any political group.

But as of early Friday, prosecutors had issued arrest warrants for 300 of the group's members and detained some of its top leaders. Morsi has also been placed in military custody.

The Egyptian Military's Roadmap

  • Temporary suspension of the constitution
  • Interim civilian government headed by Adly Mansour
  • Early presidential and parliamentary elections
  • Formation of a national reconciliation committee
  • Implementation of a media code of ethics
The Brotherhood has also slammed the military for shutting down its official television channel and newspaper, as well as several other Islamist media outlets. In a statement, the group said the moves bring Egypt "back to the era of repressive practices, dictatorship, and corruption."

Judicial officials say they will open an investigation next week against Morsi and other Brotherhood members on charges of "insulting the judiciary."

United Nations human rights chief Navi Pillay said Friday she was concerned about the reports of arrests and media shutdowns, saying there should be "no illegal acts of retribution."

Some political groups that have chosen to take part in the transition government have also criticized the moves, saying it is crucial that the Muslim Brotherhood not be driven away from the political process.

The military has already suspended the country's Islamist-backed constitution and dissolved the parliament. It plans to soon set up a panel to review the constitution and set a timetable for new elections.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs