Morsi calls for talks with opposition to end civil unrest in Egypt

By LUIS MIRANDA | THE REAL AGENDA | JANUARY 28, 2013

Egyptian President, Mohamed Morsi has had to learn quickly as the leader of Egypt. Morsi, who after being elected attempted to illegally give himself more power than he was supposed to have, rapidly found out that the Egyptian people had not revolt against Mubarak simply to welcome a new dictator.

The Egyptian leader, went from wanting power over other government branches to waving the white flag and calling on the opposition to sit down and hold talks with him today in Cairo. Morsi believes that new meetings will show his willingness to be inclusive, which may help  pacify the Eastern region that for the past four days has been on fire with a series of disturbances that claimed more than 50 lives.

Violence on the streets is seen sporadically in different parts of the country, but it almost always such violence has a very high price. One person died from a gunshot to the chest in the iconic Tahrir Square in Cairo. Meanwhile, the Army is stationed in the streets of Port Said and Suez, by order of the government, which has declared a state of emergency in those two cities and Ismailia.

The meeting will be held at 18.00 Egyptian time at the presidential palace, where Morsi expects to meet with several Islamist groups such as the Party for Freedom and Justice, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood, which supports Morsi, along with other secular organizations, the Constitution Party and the Social Democratic Party.

In a televised address to the nation on Sunday night, Morsi said he believes that “dialogue is the only way to bring stability to Egypt” and that the violence seen in recent days is “alien to the Egyptians and the revolution. ”

While Morsi called on the opposition to renounce violence seen in the context of the second anniversary of the riots that deposed Hosni Mubarak, his detractors have called for a demonstration today to commemorate the so-called “Friday of Rage”, which occurred on January 28 2011, when the revolutionaries managed the withdrawal of the armed forces and took Tahrir Square, where the hottest concentrations of  Egyptians set down since the protests began. Opponents joined with the National Salvation Front and called for Morsi to repeal the recently passed Islamist constitution, approved by referendum in December.

The curfew, between 21:00 and 06:00, is in force in Port Said, Ismailia and Suez, the three provinces where the government declared a state of emergency. In Port Said, the main focus of violence, riots started by the death sentence of 21 accused in the killing that took place in a  football stadium of the Al Masry soccer team, which killed 74 fans of the visiting team in February last year.

In the rest of the nation the riots were due to protests by the opposition for what it considers a hijacking of the democratic principles of the revolution by the Islamist Government led by Morsi. The government called for parliamentary elections for next April, but the opposition already said it will boycott them if Morsi does not repeal the Constitution and creates a national unity government.

For the fifth consecutive day, riots have occurred intermittently between youth groups and the security forces on the outskirts of Tahrir Square, in Kasr al-Aini Street and Yusef el-Guindi. In their attempts to disperse the youths, mostly using stones and petrol bombs, police used tear gas and shot pellets.

One person has died from the wounds in the chest by one of these missiles. According to the newspaper Al Ahram, it was a pedestrian walking in Tahrir that suddenly found himself in the middle of an altercation.

Soon after it arrived from the global forum in Davos, the Egyptian prime minister, Hisham Kandil, made a surprise visit to the police forces deployed around Tahrir Square. According to police sources, Kandil urged the police to use force against those who attack the institutions and state property.

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About Luis Miranda
The Real Agenda is an independent publication. It does not take money from Corporations, Foundations or Non-Governmental Organizations. It provides news reports in three languages: English, Spanish and Portuguese to reach a larger group of readers. Our news are not guided by any ideological, political or religious interest, which allows us to keep our integrity towards the readers.

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