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President Morsi meets with ministers to discuss crisis

Egypt's President Morsi meets with ministers and presidential guard to discuss growing violence sparked by opposition anger at constitutional declaration and draft constitution

Ahram Online, Thursday 6 Dec 2012
Morsi
President Mohamed Morsi meets with ministers, Thursday (Photo: Al-Ahram)
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President Mohamed Morsi met with senior officials on Thursday afternoon to discuss recent violent protests at the presidential palace sparked by anger at his constitutional declaration and the draft constitution

Attending the meeting at 2:30pm were Prime Minister Hisham Qandil, Minister of Defence Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, Minister of Justice Ahmed Mekki, Interior Minister Ahmed Gamal Eddin, Minister of Information Salah Abdel-Maqsoud, Minister of Intelligence Raafat Shehata, and head of the presidential guard Ahmed Zaki, in addition to others.

The meeting comes in the context of a number of meetings held by President Morsi following the "unfortunate" events of the past few days, read a statement by the presidential office.

The meeting discussed how to stabilise the country and "secure the gains of the January 25 Revolution," the statement added.

President Morsi is expected to give a speech about recent developments on Thursday. The exact time is yet to be announced.

Prime Minister Qandil issued a statement late Wednesday in which he called on both sides to halt the violence and begin negotiations.

"Efforts must be exerted to get out of the current political crisis," he said.

The presidential guard on Thursday afternoon called for all protesters to leave the area around the presidential palace by 3pm.

Police withdrew from the presidential palace on Tuesday when opposition protesters arrived to demonstrate against the president's constitutional declaration and the draft constitution. Supporters of the president attacked an opposition sit-in at the palace on Wednesday. Police returned in attempt to divide the fighting groups.

The clashes have resulted in the death of 6 protesters and over 600 injured.

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