News / Middle East

Egyptian Peace Elusive as Muslim Brotherhood Insists on Morsi's Return

Egytian Peace Elusive as Muslim Brotherhood Insists on Morsi's Returni
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July 31, 2013
Prospects for a quick return to peace in Egypt are slim as the Muslim Brotherhood calls for continued street protests demanding the return to power of ousted President Mohamed Morsi. VOA' Zlatica Hoke reports world leaders are urging the two sides to come to a compromise.

Egytian Peace Elusive as Muslim Brotherhood Insists on Morsi's Return

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Zlatica Hoke
Prospects for a quick return to peace in Egypt are slim as the Muslim Brotherhood calls for continued street protests demanding the return to power of ousted President Mohamed Morsi.  World leaders are urging the two sides to come to a compromise. 
 
Morsi supporters vow the protests will continue until he is returned to power, even after more than 80 of them were killed in recent clashes.  On Tuesday, hundreds of women marched in Cairo calling for Morsi's reinstatement.  
 
"I am here so I could express myself and tell the world that this was not a revolution," a protester said."It was an illegitimate military coup." 
 
The march coincided with a visit by European Union policy chief Catherine Ashton, the first outsider to meet with the detained president.  
 
U.S. President Barack Obama has asked U.S. Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham, (both members of the Armed Services Committee),  to travel to Egypt next week to push for speedy elections.   Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel called Egyptian military chief Abdul Fattah al-Sissi again Tuesday to ask him to exercise restraint.
 
Analyst Richard Fontaine, president of the Center for New American Security, said both the United States and Europe must push Egypt to move forward with an inclusive democratic process.  
 
"The worst possible outcome here is for the Muslim Brotherhood to be completely excluded from the political process and turn to violence, or ally itself with groups that will turn to violence.  It then will paralyze the country.
 
Fontaine said that it is incumbent upon Egypt's military to spell out a detailed roadmap back to democracy, based on law and non-violence.
 
Egyptians tired of violence in their streets say all they want is peace and security, regardless of who is in power.  
 
"I want the country to return to a state of security where your wife would feel safe to walk in the streets," Cairo resident Tarek Abied said.  "We need nothing more.  We don't want Hosni Mubarak or [President] Morsi, just security."
 
For now,  peace and security are not guaranteed in Egypt.

  • People perform Ramadan night prayers in Cairo, celebrating Lailat al-Qadr (the Night of Power), August 4, 2013.
  • A supporter of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi prays outside Rabaah al-Adawiya mosque in Cairo, August 4, 2013.
  • The area around the Rabaa Adiweya mosque has been packed with Muslim Brotherhood supporters sleeping in tents for over a month. Families bring children to protect them from the police forcibly dismantling the sit-in. (H. Elrasam for VOA)
  • A supporter of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi prays outside Rabaah al-Adawiya mosque in Cairo, August 4, 2013.
  • Children have been participating in protests in Egypt since the became widespread and near-constant in 2011. (H. Elrasam for VOA)
  • A supporter of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi gets relief from the afternoon heat with the help of water sprayers in front of a poster of Morsi, Cairo University,Giza, Egypt.
  • A supporter of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi cries while saluting the Egyptian flag at Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque, Nasr City, Cairo, Egypt.
  • An Egyptian woman feeds her ducks in front of a barrier recently set up by supporters of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi in their camp in Giza, southwest of Cairo, Egypt, Aug. 1, 2013. 
  • An Egyptian child attends prayers with his father at a protest near Cairo University in Giza, Egypt, August 1, 2013. 
  • Egyptian children wear head bands with Arabic writing: "No god but Allah and Mohammed is the prophet." They attend a protest outside Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque, Cairo, Egypt.
  • Supporters of Egypt's ousted President Mohamed Morsi pray at Rabaah al-Adawiya mosque, where Morsi supporters have installed a camp and hold daily rallies at Nasr City, Cairo, July 31, 2013.
  • "Third Square" actvists, who promote a middle way in the rift between the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of the army's overthrow of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, gather at Sphinx Square in Cairo, July 30, 2013.
  • "Third Square" actvists gather at Sphinx Square in Cairo, July 30, 2013.
  • Supporters of Mohamed Morsi during a march from Al-Fath Mosque to the defense ministry in Cairo, July 30, 2013.
  • Flares illuminate the gathering of several hundred activists the "Third Square" in Cairo. (Hamada Elrasam for VOA)
  • A young girl at the Third Square rally in Cairo. (Hamada Elrasam for VOA)
  • A young girl at the Third Square rally in Cairo. (Hamada Elrasam for VOA)
  • A young girl at the Third Square rally in Cairo. (Hamada Elrasam for VOA)
 

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