By July 1, 2013 0 Comments Read More →

EGYPTIAN Protestors Give 24 Hour Ultimatum, MILITARY Gives 48 Hour Ultimatum to Morsi!

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A protester holds an Egyptian national flag outside the vandalized Muslim Brotherhood headquarters in Cairo on July 1, 2013.

Egyptians who helped overthrow a 29-year dictatorship in a widely hailed revolution have now given the country’s first democratically elected president one day to step down from office.

In a statement posted Monday on its official Facebook page, Tamarod (the “rebel” campaign”) demanded that if President Mohamed Morsi doesn’t leave office by Tuesday, the group will begin a civil disobedience movement, call for nationwide protests and march on the presidential palace, where Morsi’s administration is running affairs.

If the last few days have been any indication, Tamarod’s deadline will most likely be ignored.

Opposition leader Hamdeen Sabbahi urged military intervention if Morsi refused to quit. The military just responded with an announcement that the people and Morsi have 48 hours to work this out, or they will directly intervene. This statement, undoubtedly took the president by surprise, indicating a possible coup on the horizon.

The army, which led a tumultuous transition after Mubarak’s ouster, had already warned it would intervene if there was major unrest.

“The armed forces must act, because they have always been on the side of the people” which “has expressed its will”, said Sabbahi, who came third in last year’s presidential election.

The best outcome would be for Morsi to go willingly, he added.

But Morsi’s spokesman Ehab Fahmy told reporters: “Dialogue is the only way through which we can reach an understanding… The presidency is open to a real and serious national dialogue.”

Overnight, as protesters pelted the Muslim Brotherhood building in Cairo with petrol bombs, Brotherhood supporters responded with birdshot.

An AFP journalist also reported automatic weapons fire.

In Tahrir Square, where hundreds of protesters spent the night, demonstrators blew whistles and chanted anti-Morsi slogans.

Outside the presidential palace, hundreds more staged a sit-in after the army estimated that millions had heeded the opposition call to protest.

Sunday’s turnout was described as the largest protest in Egyptian history.

“Long live the people,” read Monday’s headline in the independent daily Al-Tahrir, while Al-Masry al-Youm called it the “June 30 revolution”.

Anti-Morsi protests were held in Alexandria, the Nile Delta cities of Mansura, Menuf, Tanta and Mahalla, the canal cities of Suez and Port Said and the president’s hometown Zagazig.

In Tahrir Square, protesters brandished red cards and Egyptian flags as patriotic songs played.

“The people want the ouster of the regime,” they chanted, echoing the signature slogan of the 2011 revolt that ousted Hosni Mubarak and eventually brought Morsi to power.

His supporters have staged counter rallies and there had been fears of major confrontations.

Both sides – the anti-government demonstrators and Morsi’s supporters – have dug in their heels.

And the results have been deadly.

On Monday, protesters stormed the main headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood, the party that Morsi led before his election. Armed with Molotov cocktails, the mob set the office on fire, shouting, “The people have toppled the regime.”

At least 16 people were killed and more than 780 were wounded Sunday and Monday during the unrest in Egypt, the nation’s health minister said, according to the official Egypt News agency.

Dr. Mohammed Mustafa Hamid told the news agency that eight people alone were killed in clashes at the Muslim Brotherhood’s national headquarters in Cairo. All but 182 of the wounded have left the hospital after receiving treatment for their injuries.

All in all, it looks like no peaceful resolution is in sight, but with the military’s ultimatum, this may push the president to negotiations and compromise with the people he was elected to represent.

 

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