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Egyptian army yet to receive official orders to end curfew: Spokesman

Egyptian military spokesman says army will keep enforcing a nightly curfew until it receives an official notification about a court ruling ending the measure

Ahram Online, Tuesday 12 Nov 2013
Egyptian soldiers stand guard at a checkpoint during a dawn-to-dusk curfew (Photo: AP)
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Military spokesman Colonel Ahmed Ali said on Tuesday that the Egyptian army will continue to enforce the nightly curfew until it receives an official notification that a court has ordered an end to the country's three-month-old state of emergency. 

Earlier on Tuesday, Egypt's administrative court ordered that the state of emergency be lifted on 12 November, and not on Thursday, as had been previously announced by the cabinet, raising expectations that the curfew would effectively stop as of Tuesday night.

The court said that as the state of emergency was renewed for two months on 12 September, it had to end on 12 November and not on 14 November.

Egypt has been under a state of emergency since mid-August, following the violent dispersal by security forces of two Islamist sit-ins which sparked days of unrest. The state of emergency was imposed along with a nightly curfew that has been gradually eased.

The curfew currently extends from 1am to 5am, except for Fridays, the traditional day of protest, when it begins at 7pm. The armed forces have been in charge of supervising the curfew, and military checkpoints have been erected throughout Cairo and other major cities.

"The armed forces stress that until now they have not officially been notified of any judicial ruling," the army spokesman said in his statement, published on his official Facebook page. The armed forces "are committed to the enforcement of the curfew during the scheduled hours until it receives an executive notification of the administrative court ruling or the end of the emergency period," the statement read.

Cabinet spokesman Sherif Shawky said earlier that the state of emergency would be officially lifted in accordance with the court's ruling. He also added that the cabinet was waiting for the court to issue the decision in writing.                                

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