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Egypt army issues violence ultimatum: army-linked website
by Staff Writers
Cairo (AFP) July 25, 2013


Egypt's military has set a 48-hour deadline after which it will deal decisively with "violence and terrorism", said a Thursday statement on a military-linked website, on the eve of pro-army rallies.

The statement said military chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi issued the deadline in a Wednesday speech for all Egyptians "to return to the national fold and prepare for the future".

Sisi had called for mass rallies on Friday to give him a "mandate" to fight what he called "terrorism and violence".

Islamist supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi have been accused of using violence to restore the leader overthrown on July 3, although most of their protests are peaceful.

The statement appeared on a unofficial Facebook account with ties to the top council of military generals.

At the expiry of the deadline late on Friday, "the strategy for dealing with violence and terrorism will change...appropriately to deal guarantee security and stability", it said.

A senior army official told AFP that the statement did not reflect the military's point of view, although it appeared on a "page with links to the armed forces".

"The 48-hour ultimatum is a political invitation," the officer said. "It doesn't mean that after 48 hours we are going to crack down."

Sisi's call on Wednesday, in a televised speech, sparked outrage among Islamists and concern in Washington.

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DEMOCRACY
Egypt army calls for rallies, Islamists warn of war
Cairo (AFP) July 24, 2013
Egypt's army chief called Wednesday for rallies to back a crackdown on "terrorism and violence", in comments Islamists denounced as a call to "civil war" ahead of their own protests. With tensions already running high three weeks after the military ousted president Mohamed Morsi, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi's call for demonstrations raises the prospect of further deadly violence on the stre ... read more


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