Top News: Bahaa al-Din Offered Egypt’s PM Job, ElBaradei Set to be Appointed VP


Violent clashes that led to at least fifty-one deaths in front of Egypt’s Republican Guard compound on Monday will not derail efforts to form an interim government, presidency spokesman Ahmed al-Muslimani said. Social Democratic lawyer Ziad Bahaa al-Din is likely to be appointed interim prime minister of Egypt under a deal emerging among the country’s new political forces, a presidential spokesman said on Sunday. 


Egyptian parties condemn Republican Guard violence; Presidency forms committee to investigate clashes

The Nour Party announced that it "will withdraw from the political process" after clashes between the army and pro-Morsi protesters at dawn on Monday left over fifty dead in front of the Republican Guard headquarters. Egypt’s main opposition alliance, the National Salvation Front (NSF), condemned all acts of violence and requested an urgent and just investigation in the Republican Guard events, adding that the results of such inquiry be transparently announced. NSF leader Mohamed ElBaradei demanded on Monday an immediate independent and transparent investigation into the violence that occurred outside the Republican Guard headquarters in Cairo. Strong Egypt Party leader Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh called on interim president Adly Mansour to step down after the clashes. Al-Azhar has called for an investigation into the killing of protesters, with Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb denouncing the events that took place earlier that morning. He called on state authorities to reveal the truth about this tragedy, warned civilians against civil strife, and threatened retreat if the bloodshed continues. Meanwhile, Egypt’s presidency ordered the formation of a judicial committee to investigate the clashes that took place in the early hours of Monday between supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi and the armed forces. [Ahram Online, Reuters, Aswat Masriya, Egypt Independent, AP, 7/8/2013]

ElBaradei submits proposals to end crisis, al-Jama’a al-Islamiya launches reconciliation initiative  
Mohamed ElBaradei has submitted a new set of proposals to interim president, Adly Mansour, in attempts to pull Egypt out of a deteriorating political crisis. The proposals, of which a copy was obtained by al-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper, included “granting the new parliament powers of questioning the president, participating along with the judiciary in appointing the public prosecutor and his deputies” as well as calling for elected governors and the transfer of powers from the Justice Ministry to the Supreme Judicial Council. The Strong Egypt Party issued a statement on Saturday detailing its solutions for the current political situation, including the formation of a technocratic government. Egypt’s ultraconservative al-Jama’a al-Islamiya and its political arm the Building and Development Party have called upon interim president Adly Mansour to step down to spare Egypt a "bitter conflict." The Turkish Anadolu news agency reported Friday that the group has launched a reconciliation initiative that includes conducting a referendum on the roadmap announced by Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. The Salafi Call urged against gloating about the “detraction of others’ freedoms,” even if they are political opponents, following the arrests of key Islamist leaders. In a Sunday statement published by state-run MENA, the Salafi group said that oppression harms all citizens, and condemned photographs of the arrests of public officials. [SIS, 6/8/2013]

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood calls for uprising
The Muslim Brotherhood called on Egyptians to rise up against those who "want to steal" the revolution, a statement by its political wing said on Monday, after the Health Ministry said dozens of people were killed in shooting outside the Cairo headquarters of the Republican Guard. The Muslim Brotherhood on Sunday denied news reports that Supreme Guide Mohamed Badie had offered to halt Islamist protests in exchange for the release and return to power of President Mohamed Morsi. Badie, told a protest rally on Friday that Morsi must be reinstated as president following his removal by the army, "otherwise its our lives." The Brotherhood’s official spokesperson Yasser Mehrez said that the National Alliance to Support Legitimacy will not engage in any negotiations until Morsi is reinstated. The Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) Secretary General Hussein Ibrahim announced on his Facebook page that the party refuses to participate in talks with interim president Adly Mansour.
The Brotherhood announced that they believe Western governments fully supported the military overthrow of Morsi; a decision it says will fuel hatred towards the United States and Europe and ultimately backfire on them. Mohamed al-Beltagy, a senior Brotherhood politician, said everyone would lose, including the West, from violence that could result from the removal of Morsi, Egypt’s first freely elected head of state who served just one year in office. They also said on Monday that the chief of the armed forces wanted to drive Egypt to the same fate as Syria after at least forty-two people were killed in a shooting in Cairo. [Reuters, Egypt Independent, Ahram Online, 7/82013]

Interim president dissolves Shura Council, appoints new intelligence head, four advisors
Egypt’s Interim President Adly Mansour issued a constitutional declaration dissolving the Shura Council on Friday. He also appointed Major General Mohamed Farid al-Tohami as the new head of intelligence, dismissing Egypt’s head of intelligence Mohamed Raafat Shehata and appointed him as a presidential security advisor. On Saturday, he appointed writer Sekina Fouad as presidential advisor for women’s affairs. The sixty-eight-year-old author and journalist is the deputy head of Egypt’s liberal Democratic Front Party. Fouad was among the liberal figures who supported deposed president Mohamed Morsi last June during presidential elections against Mubarak’s last Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq. She was then appointed as an advisor to Morsi, but resigned in protest of his policies. Mansour also issued a decree on Saturday, appointing TV Host Ahmed al-Muslimani as his media advisor, and Ali Awad Mohamed Saleh presidential constitutional adviser, and Mostafa Hegazy political adviser. Mansour, met on Saturday with Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim in the presidential palace, as well as with his three new aides. A delegation from Egypt’s "Rebel" campaign group also met with Mansour on Sunday at the presidential palace. [Reuters, Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya, Egypt Independent, 7/6/2013]

Bahaa al-Din offered Egypt’s PM job, ElBaradei set to be appointed VP
Violent clashes that led to at least fifty-one deaths in front of Egypt’s Republican Guard compound on Monday will not derail efforts to form an interim government, presidency spokesman Ahmed al-Muslimani said. Social Democratic lawyer Ziad Bahaa al-Din is likely to be appointed interim prime minister of Egypt under a deal emerging among the country’s new political forces, a presidential spokesman said on Sunday. Bahaa al-Din, who was also the head of Egypt’s General Authority for Investment, has however said "a decision is neither final nor official." Liberal politician Mohamed ElBaradei would probably be appointed interim deputy president instead.  ElBaradei’s candidacy for Egypt’s interim premiership was challenged by some Islamists, among them the Nour Party and the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, who said the move would heighten polarization between opponents of toppled president Mohamed Morsi and his Islamist backers. Hamdeen Sabbahi, Egypt’s main left-wing political leader called on Monday for the immediate formation of an interim government to fill a dangerous political vacuum after the deadly clashes at the Republican Guard. On Sunday, official sources within the Popular Trend political party said Sabbahi held a closed meeting on Saturday with Nour Party leader Younis Makhyoun, and Salafi Call leader Yasser Borhamy, and succeeded in persuading them to support the appointment of Mohamed ElBaradei as prime minister. He also endorsed military intervention to oust Morsi. Meanwhile, al-Jama’a al-Islamiya demanded on Sunday that interim President Adly Mansour resigns his post "in order to save the country from engaging in a bitter struggle," reported the state news agency. [Egypt Independent, Reuters, Ahram Online, AMAY (Arabic), 7/8/2013]

Also of Interest:
Egyptian Islamists’ anger, woes | Ahram Online
Truth in numbers: How much legitimacy is legitimate? | Ahram Online
Egypt’s emerging leaders after Morsi’s overthrow | AP
Key events in Egypt’s uprising and unrest | AP
Shooting of pro-Morsi protesters deepens Egypt crisis | Reuters
Qena governor resigns | DNE
Egypt Islamists protest, politics hit a snag | Reuters
NCW backs power change | DNE
Justice Minister resigns | Egypt Independent
Egypt’s Culture Minister resigns | Aswat Masriya
Egypt’s governor of Suez resigns | Aswat Masriya
Ministry may dissolve "NGO" Muslim Brotherhood | Egypt Independent


Court exonerates anti-Morsi activists

A Cairo criminal court on Sunday cleared twelve activists of inciting violence during confrontations outside the Muslim Brotherhood’s Cairo headquarters in March. Defendants included outspoken political activist Ahmed Douma, blogger Alaa Abd al-Fattah, journalist Nawara Negm, opposition National Salvation Front member Hazem Abd al-Azim, Constitution Party member Ahmed Eid and political activist Karim al-Shaer. In Alexandria, Mansheya Prosecutor Ahmed Darwish terminated his lawsuit against activist Hassan Mostafa, who was sentenced to a year in prison for assaulting the deputy attorney general. Darwish said Mostafa is going through difficult times, as his baby is ill. “I am putting an end to this lawsuit  for the reconciliation that must prevail among all people so as to bring peace to the country,” he said. [DNE, Reuters, Egypt Independent, Ahram Online, 6/7/2013]

Brotherhood, Islamist leaders detained
The public prosecution ordered on Saturday the detention of four senior leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood on charges of inciting violence which resulted in the killing of anti-Morsi protesters outside the group’s headquarters in Cairo. Deputy Supreme Guide Khairat al-Shater, former supreme guide Mahdy Akef, deputy leader Rashad al-Bayumi and Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) leader Saad al-Katatni will be held for fifteen days. Both Bayumi and Katatni were ordered to be released by the prosecutor on Friday although will remain under investigation. On Monday morning, prosecutors ordered the arrest of senior Brotherhood member Mohamed al-Beltagy and peacher Safwat Hegazy on the same charges. The South Giza Prosecution issued arrest warrants on Sunday for two leading Islamist figures. Assem Abdel Maged and Tarek al-Zomor, both leaders of the Building and Development Party, the political arm of al-Jama’a al-Islamiya, were accused of inciting violence that lead to deadly clashes in Bein al-Sarayat area in Giza. On Friday, security forces arrested Helmy al-Gazzar, secretary general of the FJP in Giza, also on charges of inciting violence in Moqattam and al-Sarayat. The prosecutors also ordered the detention of Salafist leader Hazem Salah Abu-Ismail for inciting the murder of anti-Morsi protesters. Human Rights Watch lists out sixteen members of the MB that have been detained (some released) either detained at the Presidential Guard headquarters or being held in Tora prison. Five other members of the MB were arrested on Friday for attempting to raid a police station in Minya. [DNE, Aswat Masriya, Reuters, 6/8/2013]

Also of Interest:
Prosecutor issues arrest warrant for Al Jazeera director | Egypt Independent
Retrial of Egypt’s Mubarak adjourned to August 17 | AP, Egypt Independent, Reuters
Court adjourns Khaled Said case to August 31 | Egypt Independent
Egypt’s top prosecutor submits resignation -MENA | Reuters, Egypt Independent


Egypt’s financial position may be even worse than previously estimated

Egypt’s crumbling public finances may be in even worse shape than previously estimated. While stock and bond markets have cheered the ouster of unpopular President Mohamed Morsi by the army and Egypt’s debt insurance costs have tumbled, data shows that financial risks are about to escalate. Egypt’s net foreign currency reserves shrank $1.1bn to $14.922bn in June, according to the latest disclosed figures on Central Bank of Egypt’s website. The first drop in Egypt’s foreign currency reserves in two months can be attributed to an exceptional forex auction as well the drop in world gold prices. Meanwhile, the governor of Egypt’s central bank, Hisham Ramez, flew to Abu Dhabi on Sunday, officials at Cairo airport said, following Egyptian media reports Cairo was seeking financial aid from Gulf states after the ousting of Morsi. [Reuters, DNE, Ahram Online, 7/7/2013]

Also of Interest:
Egypt stocks plunge after Republican Guard HQ clashes | Ahram Online. Reuters
Tour operators steer clear of Cairo but Red Sea still on itinerary | Ahram Online
Brent crude hits 3 month high above $108 on Egypt unrest, supply worries | Ahram Online


Al-Azhar Grand Imam urges against violence, Qaradawi issues fatwa supporting Morsi

Al-Azhar Grand Imam Ahmed al-Tayyeb urged the Egyptian people to find their way out of the “ugly strife” trying to spread in the country. Former Grand Mufti Ali Gomaa also released a joint statement on Friday night also condemning the violence. The statement was signed by Islamic preachers Abla al-Kahlawi, al-Habib Ali al-Gefri, Osama al-Azhari and Moez Masoud. Meanwhile, leading Qatar-based cleric Youssef al-Qaradawi said in a fatwa on Saturday that Egyptians should support ousted President Mohamed Morsi. Egyptian-born Qaradawi, one of the most prominent Sunni clerics in the Middle East, said the military’s intervention to depose Morsi on Wednesday was against democracy and the constitution. He added that many scholars from Cairo’s al-Azhar Islamic university, the country’s pre-eminent Muslim institution, agreed with him.  [DNE, Reuters, 7/6/2013]

Morsi supporters stage rallies across Cairo
Rallies in support of ousted President Mohamed Morsi have continued across Egypt over the past few days. On Sunday, prior to deadly clashes breaking out, tens of thousands of Morsi’s supporters marched from Raba’a al-Adaweya Square to the nearby headquarters of the Republican Guard on Sunday, where they believe Morsi is being detained. Supporters also marched to Nahda Square in front of Cairo University on Sunday evening to demand Morsi’s return to power, the Middle East News Agency reported. On Friday, hundreds of protesters supporting Morsi flocked to Rab’a al-Adaweya mosque in Nasr City to take part in a sit-in that has been taking place for the last eight days. Nearly 5,000 supporters of Morsi blocked Salah Salem, a vital highway from the Republican Guard headquarters to the Egyptian Air Force headquarters, while thousands staged a march from al-Estiqama Mosque to al-Nahda Square in Giza. Army tanks sealed off the Qasr al-Nile Bridge to prevent a pro-Morsi march from accessing Tahrir Square, the Middle East News Agency reported on Friday. Hundreds of Morsi’s supporters also marched to the national broadcasting centre on the banks of the Nile in central Cairo as night fell on Friday. [Aswat Masriya, 7/7/2013]

Mass protests against Muslim Brotherhood take to Egypt’s streets
The blueprint for nationwide rallies on Sunday by opponents of ousted President Mohamed Morsi has been announced by the June 30 Front, led by the anti-Morsi Tamarod (Rebel) campaign. Responding to claims by Islamists that they are "defending the legitimacy" of democratically-elected Morsi, the anti-Morsi camp calls for mass demonstrations to "defend the people’s legitimacy," as tension between rival factions over the dramatic removal of Morsi from the presidency heightens. In Egypt’s coastal second city, masses converged on the vicinity of the Sidi Gaber Train Station to protest against the Muslim Brotherhood. Tens of thousands in Alexandria began marching in seven different demonstrations at around 6pm, to eventually converge on Sidi Gaber Square, where thousands are already demonstrating. [Ahram Online, Aswat Masriya, 6/7/2013]

Also of Interest:
Residents of Cairo’s Manial district mourn victims of Friday clashes | Ahram Online
Funeral prayers for victims in Egypt’s Presidential Guard Monday | Ahram Online
Interview: The Egyptian rebel who ‘owns’ Tahrir Square | Ahram Online
Back to the future for Egypt’s state media | Reuters
Freedom and Justice Party newspaper not censored, says Al-Ahram official | Ahram Online
Egyptian security forces raid Al Jazeera’s Cairo office | Reuters


At least fifty-one dead and 435 injured in pro-Morsi, Army clashes

At least fifty-one died and 435 were injured outside the Republican Guard headquarters in Salah Salem in clashes between 4 and 5 a.m. on Monday morning. Facts remain unclear as to what exactly transpired at the Republican Guard sit-in; conflicting reports are coming from the army as well as the protesters regarding who instigated the attack. Military spokesman Ahmed Aly said in a press conference on Monday afternoon that army and police forces protecting the Republican Guard headquarters were attacked on Monday by armed groups. Pro-Morsi protesters, however, said that the army and police attacked the peaceful sit-in during dawn prayer, first firing tear gas from both ends of the street and using live ammunition and birdshot shortly afterwards. They claimed that the army initiated fire from the rooftop of the headquarters’ building. In an official statement early on Monday, the armed forces also said they arrested more than 200 armed pro-Morsi supporters, adding that investigations are taking place with the arrested suspects. The Armed Forces statement added that one officer was killed and several were injured. The Egyptian prosecution has started investigations into the violence. [Reuters, DNE, Egypt Independent, 7/8/2013]

Clashes across Egypt leave up to eighty-four dead, hundreds injured since end of June
Since late June, Egypt has witnessed increased violence and clashes throughout the country bringing the estimated number of deaths to about eighty-four with hundreds of injured. At least twenty-four people died across Egypt on Friday as Islamists opposed to the overthrow of President Mohamed Morsi took to the streets to vent their fury at what they say was a military coup. Fierce clashes in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria left fourteen dead and 200 injured when the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) protesters arrived at Sidi Gaber where anti-Morsi protesters were demonstrating. In Cairo, five people were killed as pro- and anti-Morsi protesters ran amok in central areas and armored personnel carriers rumbled among them to restore calm, including Maspero where pro-Morsi supporters clashed with security forces. Pro-Morsi supporters also attacked the Judges Club with petrol bombs. Several Islamist supporters of Morsi were wounded by gunfire and four killed as a crowd of several hundred tried to march towards the Republican Guard Headquarters where he is supposedly being held. An army spokesman said that the army did not use live rounds but only shot blanks and tear gas to break up the protest.

Also on Friday, Islamist protesters detained dozens of officers and central security conscripts inside the Fayoum governorate headquarters, a security source said on Friday. The protesters stormed the headquarters earlier today and declared a sit-in inside the building until the deposed president and all MB leaders who were detained or put under house arrest are released. The force in charge of securing the building was held inside the building, the source told Aswat Masriya. This force includes one major general, one colonel and dozens of soldiers, the source added.

Clashes have erupted in Mansoura, the regional capital of Egypt’s Daqahliya governorate, between opponents and supporters of Morsi, leaving dozens injured, Al-Ahram’s Arabic-language news website reported. Security forces reportedly intervened with teargas to separate the rival groups. In Tanta, the capital of Egypt’s Gharbiya governorate, meanwhile, clashes also erupted between rival camps. The number of injuries remains unclear.

At least fifty people were injured on Friday in clashes at the Suez governorate headquarters on Friday evening, under secretary of the Health Ministry in Suez Mohamed al-Azizi said. Additionally, one person was killed and fifteen were injured when security forces chased protesters who tried to raid Assiut‘s government office on Friday. Army forces in Sinai confronted hundreds of pro-Morsi supporters to stop them from barging into the North Sinai governorate headquarters.

Clashes erupted on Saturday between anti and pro-Morsi supporters in Beheira leaving fourteen people injured. The clashes began after the supporters tried to stage a rally from a mosque in Damanhour, but the anti-Morsi protesters prevented them from rallying and besieged four of them inside a shop in the area, reported an Aswat Masriya eyewitness. [DNE, HRW, 7/8/2013]

Sectarian violence spreads following Morsi’s ouster
On Friday, violence broke out in Luxor following a fight between a group of Christians and a single Muslim man, who died of his injuries, according to state-owned Al-Ahram. It also reported that groups of local Muslims attacked the villages of Naga Hasan and Dabaya after news broke of Hassan Sayed Segdy’s death earlier that morning, resulting in four Copts killed and thirty-two injured. President Mohamed Morsi supporters and members of the hardline Islamist group al-Jama’a al-Islamiya fired at a diocese in Qena while marching on Friday, an Aswat Masriya eyewitness reported. On Saturday, a Coptic priest was shot dead in the North Sinai neighborhood of al-Masaeed. Gunmen shot dead a Coptic Christian priest in Egypt’s lawless region in the third recorded instance of sectarian violence against Christians since Morsi was ousted Maspero Youth Union meanwhile denounced what they identified as Muslim Brotherhood attacks on churches, claiming sectarian attacks aimed at hurting the revolution and undermining people’s demands for freedom. "The president’s supporters attacked [the] churches in Luxor, Qena, Minya, Towa, Sharm al-Sheikh and Marsa Matrouh," the statement said. [DNE, Egypt Independent, Aswat Masriya, 7/7/2013]

Militants renew attacks in Sinai
Five Egyptian police officers were shot dead on Friday by unknown gunmen in the North Sinai town of al-Arish outside a government building, medical sources said Friday. Two Egyptian police officers were also shot dead on Friday by unknown gunmen in the Sinai town of al-Arish in front of a government building, medical sources said. On Sunday, an Egyptian border guard was killed and a police officer shot in two separate incidents in the Sinai Peninsula. Egyptian security officials say suspected Islamic militants have also bombed a natural gas pipeline to Jordan south of the city of al-Arish in the Sinai Peninsula. Sources indicated to Al-Ahram’s Arabic-language news website that a full military operation is expected in Sinai within hours, following four attacks on checkpoints earlier Sunday. Seven crates of ammunition were confiscated from an underground tunnel to Gaza, according to Aswat Masriya. The Egyptian authorities will impose a security crackdown in the Sinai Peninsula within hours to confront gunmen who are responsible for recent attacks across the area, security sources said on Sunday. The Rafah border was closed on Friday for security reasons an informed source told the state-run MENA news agency. [DNE, 7/7/2013]

Also of Interest:
Suspect of throwing protesters from house rooftop arrested | SIS
Egypt counts dead after Islamist protest violence | Reuters
Islamist group threatens violence after ousting of Egypt’s Morsi | Reuters
Egypt officials ‘order closure of Islamist party HQ’ | AFP
Egypt’s military tighten security around Cairo, Giza | Ahram Online
Egypt deploys security forces to state TV building | Aswat Masriya
Military Source: Two Armed Forces soldiers kidnapped by Morsi supporters | SIS
ANHRI: 1210 martyrs since January 2011 revolution | DNE
ANHRI: 154 killed during Morsi presidency | Egypt Independent


International reactions to events in Egypt

UN human rights chief Navi Pillay said on Friday she was concerned by reports of the detention of leading members of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, but stopped short of saying whether their overthrow this week constituted a coup d’etat. Hamas called on Egypt Sunday to reopen the Rafah border crossing, which has been closed for three consecutive days. It also "voice[d] extreme pain and grief for the falling of these victims" and sent condolences to the families of those killed in pro-Morsi protests at the Republican Guard headquarters. Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) official Yasser Abd Rabboh called on Hamas to reevaluate its regional position Sunday, now that Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, its main Islamic ally, has been toppled. Iran’s foreign ministry on Sunday criticized the Egyptian military’s toppling of the nation’s Islamist president, calling the move improper in its first official reaction. Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Sunday Egypt risked slipping into civil war following the military overthrow of Morsi. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu condemned the Cairo shooting in which dozens died on Monday, describing the incident as a "massacre" and calling for the start of a normalization process. Qatar, a main backer of Morsi’s government, expressed "great concern" over the deadly clashes and urged authorities to guarantee the "rights and protections" for all groups to express their views. Mideast envoy Tony Blair, however, has defended the Egyptian army’s ouster of Morsi, saying the alternative would have been chaos.
[AP, Egypt Independent, Reuters, 7/8/2013]

Egypt overthrow shakes Islamists in the region
The military’s overthrow of President Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood’s (MB) fall from power in Egypt have sent Islamist parties around the region scrambling to preserve gains made in the Middle East and North Africa as a result of the Arab Spring uprisings. Brotherhood offshoots in Tunisia and Syria are struggling to distance themselves from their parent outfit in Egypt, while the secular forces they are struggling against have been emboldened. Syria’s Islamist rebels say the downfall of the popularly elected MB president has proven that Western nations pushing for democracy will never accept them, and reinforced the view of radicals that a violent power grab is their only resort. Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abbas Araghchi has said that Iran does not consider "street democracy" good democracy, and denied that the recent developments in Egypt, which led to the toppling of Morsi, represent the failure of the Islamic awakening. [AP, Reuters, Egypt Independent, 7/7/2013]

Obama: United States not backing any Egyptian party or group
In a statement on Saturday, President Barack Obama reiterated that the United States is not aligned with and is not supporting any particular Egyptian political party or group and again condemned the ongoing violence across Egypt. US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel held three conversations with the head of Egypt’s armed forces on Friday and Saturday, emphasizing the need for “a peaceful civilian transition in Egypt,” the Pentagon said on Saturday. In their conversations, Secretary Hagel emphasized “the need for a peaceful civilian transition in Egypt,” Pentagon spokesman George Little said in a statement. The United States is unlikely to pull its $1.5 billion in mostly military aid to Egypt any time soon, US lawmakers said on Sunday, despite the Egyptian military takeover of the government in what the opposition has called a coup. "We should continue to support the military, the one stabilizing force in Egypt that I think can temper down the political feuding," US Representative Mike Rogers said on CNN’s "State of the Union." Other lawmakers agreed Washington should use caution in responding to the turmoil in Egypt as it tries to transition to a democratic government. Meanwhile, Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr said he assured US Secretary of State John Kerry in a telephone call on Thursday that the overthrow of President Mohamed Morsi had not been a military coup. In calls with his Turkish, Saudi, and Qatari counterparts, as well as with Mohamed ElBaradei and US ambassador Egypt, Anne Patterson, Secretary Kerry “reiterated the call for the violence in Egypt to cease and for all parties—the Muslim Brotherhood, opposition, and military—to ensure that those expressing their views do so peacefully.” In a separate statement, Kerry expressed concern over ongoing violence in Egypt. [AP, DNE, 7/7/2013]

Also of Interest:
African Union suspends Egypt after army overthrow of president | Reuters
Egypt regrets its suspension from the African Union | Egypt Independent, DNE
Egypt and Syria to keep consulate relations: FM spokesperson | Ahram Online, SIS
Egyptian ambassador to US says no military coup | Reuters, Ahram Online
Tamarod leader says the movement against US policies, not US population | DNE

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