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Egyptian islamists propose ending violence and beginning peace talks

November 16, 2013, 19:20 UTC+3
The National Alliance for Supporting Legitimacy demand “stopping the bloodshed,” restoring constitutional legitimacy and ending the military coup
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© EPA/KHALED ELFIQI

CAIRO, November 16. /ITAR-TASS/. Egyptian islamists have proposed to initiate a dialogue with the government in order to seek a way out of the country’s political crisis, which followed Mohammed Morsi’s overthrow in July. In an announcement authored by The National Alliance for Supporting Legitimacy, also known as the Anti-Coup Alliance, which strives for reinstatement of Morsi as the president, outlines the conditions which are to be met in order to initiate talks.

For instance, Islamists demand “stopping the bloodshed,” restoring constitutional legitimacy and ending the military coup. Before peace talks may begin, the Alliance insist that political prisoners are freed and that Islamist mass media resume operation – the latter were shut down following the toppling of Mohammed Morsi’s regime.

The document also states that “peaceful opposition is the only way to end the coup and return to the democratic path.” Meanwhile, local observers note that the main demand – reinstatement of Mohammed Morsi as the president, which was voiced by the Alliances on several occasions in the past, this time was not explicitly stated in the announcement.

After being overthrown by the Egyptian army July 3rd, Morsi was held in a safe place at an unknown location; meanwhile his supporters demanded his release and return to power. July 8th dozens of armed islamists attacked the Republican Guard headquarters in Cairo, believing Morsi to be held there. This attack and following clashes between protesters and the military led to 53 casualties.

Mohammed Morsi was taken into custody July 26. He was accused of several of espionage and treason, prison breaks during mass anti-government protests in 2011 as well as conspiring with the Palestinian Hamas group.

August 15 Mohammed Morsi’s arrest has been previously extended to 30 days. He wasinitially detained July 26 for 15 days pending investigation into his potentially illegal activities. According to reports of Egyptian media, he is being accused of espionage and treason, prison breaks during mass anti-government protests in 2011 as well as conspiring with the Palestinian Hamas group MENA news agency reports that he was already questioned with regards to some of these accusations.  

Violence is currently sweeping the country, with Islamist militants and the military not giving in to the demands of the other side.

Meanwhile, Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy said on Monday that Egypt will move forward in compliance with a roadmap, which was approved earlier and which envisions elections in the beginning of 2014.

“Egypt’s priority is to ensure national security,” Fahmy said, adding that Egypt “faces the crisis, but the country follows the right way. I believe in the future.”

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