Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - August 29th, 2014

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

French Prime Minister calls on ECB to go further to help economy

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

South Africa: Four men guilty of shooting Rwandan exile

Read more

WEB NEWS

France: fighting political corruption with transparency

Read more

WEB NEWS

Using the web to further the cause: ISIS vs USA

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

  • Iraqi forces free Armeli in biggest victory over IS militants since June

    Read more

  • Anti-government protesters storm Pakistan's state TV

    Read more

  • PSG trounce Saint-Etienne 5-0 with Ibrahimovic hat trick

    Read more

  • Putin calls for 'statehood' talks on eastern Ukraine

    Read more

  • Rescue efforts under way after French apartment block blast

    Read more

  • Poland marks 75 years since German invasion of WWII

    Read more

  • Israel appropriates large tracts of West Bank land

    Read more

  • Tension rises in Hong Kong as Beijing rejects open elections

    Read more

  • French police stop 'teenage jihadist' from flying to Syria

    Read more

  • Kidnapped Yazidi women 'sold to Islamists' in Syria

    Read more

  • Confusion reigns after Lesotho 'coup'

    Read more

  • France's Simon beats Ferrer to advance to last 16 in US Open

    Read more

  • French PM vows to safeguard 35-hour work week

    Read more

  • Inside Novoazovsk – the pro-Russians' latest conquest

    Read more

  • Filipino UN troops escape Islamists in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • Fugitive British killer returns to French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

Africa

Egypt's interim ruler sets elections within six months

© AFP

Video by Olivia SALAZAR-WINSPEAR , Joseph TANDY

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-07-09

In the wake of fresh violence between the army and supporters of ousted president Mohammed Morsi, Egypt’s new interim leader has issued a decree scheduling a parliamentary poll within six months and a presidential vote to follow.

Egypt’s interim head of state has set a speedy timetable for elections, after the military ouster of Islamist President Mohamed Morsi last week sparked a wave of bloody protests.

A decree issued by Adli Mansour, who was picked by the army to succeed Morsi, pointed to a parliamentary ballot within about six months with a presidential vote to follow.

The need for a political breakthrough in the Arab world’s biggest country is pressing.

At least 51 people were killed on Monday when the army opened fire on Morsi supporters camped outside Cairo’s Republican Guard barracks where the deposed leader is believed to be held.

The military said it opened fire in response to an attack by armed assailants.

Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood movement called for more protests on Tuesday, raising the risk of further violence, although an umbrella group representing anti-Morsi protesters said they would not demonstrate.

The bloodshed has shocked Egyptians, already tired of the turbulence that began more than two years ago with the overthrow of autocrat Hosni Mubarak in a popular uprising.

It also raised alarm among key donors like the United States and the European Union, as well as in Israel, with which Egypt has had a peace treaty since 1979.

Millions of people took to the streets on June 30 to demand Morsi’s resignation, fearing he was orchestrating a creeping Islamist takeover of the state - a charge the Brotherhood has vehemently denied.

Shocking scenes

Anti-Morsi protesters, who were performing prayers outside military barracks, and the army give two very different accounts of Monday’s shootings, FRANCE 24’s special correspondent in Egypt, Gallagher Fenwick, explained.

“The Islamists describe a raid by special forces, who used live bullets while protesters had no weapons. Some of the men praying had even come with their wives and babies”, Fenwick said.

But the military explained that the Republican Guard facility came “under attack by armed terrorists”, he added.

Emergency services said 435 people were also wounded in the deadly incident.

At a hospital near Cairo’s Rabaa Adawiya mosque, where many of the wounded and dead were taken, rooms were crammed full, sheets were stained with blood and medics rushed to attend to those hurt.

Video broadcast by Egyptian state TV showed Morsi supporters throwing rocks at soldiers in riot gear on one of the main roads leading to Cairo airport.

Young men, some carrying sticks, crouched behind a building, emerging to throw petrol bombs before retreating again.

The graphic scenes came just three days after Cairo, Alexandria and other cities and towns were rocked by running street battles between Morsi’s supporters and opponents, which went on for hours despite a heavy military presence.

Leader targets early elections

Mansour decreed that Egypt will hold new parliamentary elections once amendments to its suspended constitution are approved in a referendum - a process that could take about six months, less than some people had expected.

In what appeared to be an olive branch to Islamists, the decree included controversial language put into the constitution last year that defined the principles of Islamic sharia law.

The Brotherhood movement has refused to have anything to do with the process, and thousands of supporters have camped out in northeast Cairo for the last five days and vowed not to budge until Morsi returns as president - a seemingly vain hope.

The events have worried Western allies. The United Nations said it was “gravely concerned” about mounting violence in Egypt and said the country was on a “precarious path.”

“The Secretary-General condemns these killings and calls for them to be thoroughly investigated by independent and competent national bodies,” it said in a statement.

The United States, still refraining from calling the military intervention a “coup” - a label that would trigger legal obstacles to continuing aid payments - called on Egypt’s army to exercise “maximum restraint.”

But White House spokesman Jay Carney said an immediate cut-off in military aid to Egypt "would not be in our best interests", when asked whether Washington was reconsidering the more than $1 billion--mostly military aid--it provides annually.

The Egyptian military has insisted that the overthrow was not a coup and that it was enforcing the “will of the people” after millions took to the streets on June 30 to call for Morsi’s resignation.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Date created : 2013-07-09

  • EGYPT

    Muslim Brotherhood calls for protests after Cairo killings

    Read more

  • EGYPT

    Morsi supporters killed at dawn rally in Cairo

    Read more

  • EGYPT

    Egyptian Islamists ‘pull out’ of government talks

    Read more

COMMENT(S)