What do you think? Should we suspend foreign aid to Egypt?
What do you think? Should we suspend foreign aid to Egypt?
CAIRO – As the sun set on the first day of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, families across Cairo gathered for the fast-breaking iftar meal in a country that in the last two weeks has seen protests by millions, a coup against an elected president and the deaths of dozens of people in clashes with the military.
Ramadan is traditionally a time of personal reflection and feeling a sense of brotherhood with fellow Muslims, but in the aftermath of the military overthrow of President Mohammed Morsi, the divisions among Egyptians extend even down to this traditional meal.
On one side of the city, Tahrir Square remains the symbolic center of the revolution that overthrew Hosni Mubarak and later opposed Morsi. Across town in an eastern district, Morsi’s supporters have coalesced around a major intersection in front of the mosque of Rabaah al-Adawiya.
Breaking their fast outdoors, the people in the two camps expressed bafflement and disdain for the other side.
“I don’t know if the people at Rabaah al-Adawiya are out of their minds or if they are brainwashed,” said Shenouda William, a 35-year-old lawyer, who sat with about 100 people in the echoing emptiness of Tahrir Square to break their fast. Others described the Morsi supporters in the Muslim Brotherhood as ignorant peasants or possibly Palestinian and Syrian refugees looking for food and a place to sleep.
THE GUARDIAN UK
Egypt is braced for further dramatic events on Friday as the vanquishedMuslim Brotherhood called for a “day of rejection” following a widespread crackdown on its leadership by the country’s new interim president, Adly Mansour.
Supporters of the ousted president Mohamed Morsi, still reeling from the military coup that removed their leader from power, are expected to take to the streets after Friday prayers following a series of raids and arrests that decimated the Muslim Brotherhood’s senior ranks and consolidated the miltary’s hold on the country.
In a stark sign of Egypt’s new political reality, the group’s supreme leader, Mohamed al-Badie, who was untouchable under Morsi’s rule, was one of those arrested.
Gehad el-Haddad, a spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood, said: “We are being headhunted all over the country. We are holding a mass rally after Friday prayers to take all peaceful steps necessary to bring down this coup.” He called for demonstrations to be peaceful, despite fears that anger may spill over into violence.
State prosecutors announced on Thursday that Morsi, who is in military custody, would face an investigation starting next week into claims that he had “insulted the presidency” – a move that would appear to put an end to any hopes of a political resurrection.
At his inauguration on Thursday, Mansour, who was appointed as head of the constitutional court on Sunday, said this week’s protests had “corrected the path of the glorious revolution that took place on 25 January 2011”, and that continued revolution was needed until “we stop producing tyrants.”
He also reached out to members of the Muslim Brotherhood, calling the organisation “part of the fabric of Egyptian society”.
“They are just one of its parties and they are invited to integrate. If they answer the call, they will be welcomed,” he told Channel 4 in his first interview.
Our $Billion in foreign aid to Egypt
should continue only if
the military sets up a truer democracy
with a guarantee of
peace with Israel.
An Associated Press video journalist at the scene says protesters stormed the six-story building in an eastern Cairo district Monday morning, leaving the heavily fortified villa with furniture and files.
Footage on local TV networks showed smashed windows and smoke billowing out of the building. One protester was seen removing the Muslim Brotherhood sign from the building’s front wall.
The storming of the Brotherhood’s headquarters followed overnight clashes between armed Morsi supporters barricaded inside the building and young protesters pelting it with firebombs and rocks.
At least 10 people were killed during Sunday’s protests, five of them in provinces south of the capital Cairo. Activists said five more were killed outside the headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood.
On Sunday, supporters of the Islamist leader barricaded inside the Brotherhood office opened fire on protesters pelting the suburban villa with rocks and firebombs. A fire broke out in the heavily fortified building.
By NBC News staff and wire reports.
Updated at 7 p.m. ET: CAIRO — President Mohamed Morsi on Thursday invited political groups and legal figures to meet for a national dialogue on solutions to Egypt’s political crisis after clashes between his supporters and his foes left seven dead and hundreds wounded.
Morsi did not, however, rescind decrees granting him wide powers that his opponents had demanded, and his overtures on talks were immediately rejected by opposition leaders.
The main office of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood was set ablaze late Thursday, the group’s political party said, and another office used by the party was torched in a suburb south of the city, the state news agency reported.
In a nationally televised address to the nation, Morsi said he would bring together a number of groups at a Saturday meeting at the presidential palace.
“Such painful events happened because of political differences that should be resolved through dialogue,” the Islamist president said after two days of violence during protests.
The discussions would center on a political roadmap after a referendum on a new constitution, Reuters reported. Morsi said they would discuss the fate of the upper house of parliament after the lower house was dissolved in June, the election law and other issues. He said plans for the referendum on December 15 were on track.
WE SHOULD PUT ALL AID TO EGYPT ON HOLD
They fought for democracy.
They voted for the Muslim Brotherhood