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Egypt blocks UN Security Council condemnation of Turkey unrest over statement wording

Reuters , Saturday 16 Jul 2016
People cheer Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdodan during a rally near his house in Istanbul on July 16, 2016 (AFP)
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The United Nations Security Council failed on Saturday to condemn the violence and unrest in Turkey after Egypt objected to the wording of a statement that called on all parties to "respect the democratically elected government of Turkey."

Foreign ministry spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid told Ahram Online Egypt had reservations about the way part of the statement was phrased, saying it was not objecting to the content of the statement.

"Talks are still underway after Egypt's decision and we are yet to see if we will eventually approve a rephrased statement," he said.

Abu Zeid declined to reveal the part of the statement that Egypt objected to.

"I do not like to comment while the statement is still deliberated by the Security Council," he added.

The US-drafted statement expressed grave concern over the situation in Turkey, urged the parties to show restraint, avoid any violence or bloodshed, and called for an urgent end to the crisis and return to rule of law.

Statements by the 15-member Security Council have to be agreed by consensus.

Reuters quoted anonymous diplomats as saying that Egypt argued that the UN Security Council was not in a position to determine whether a government had been democratically elected.

Egypt's mission to the United Nations reportedly did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Turkish forces loyal to President Tayyip Erdogan largely crushed an attempted military coup on Saturday after crowds answered his call to take to the streets in support of the government and dozens of rebels abandoned their tanks.

The relationship between Egypt and Turkey deteriorated after the 2013 ouster of Egypt's Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, a close ally of Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP).

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