Egypt faces political crisis not security crisis, says Al-Gamaa Islamiya

Ahram Online, Monday 27 Jan 2014

Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya condemns attacks against protesters on 25 January revolution anniversary

Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya released a statement Sunday critical of the Egyptian government, saying Egypt is going through a political crisis and not a security one.

The statement congratulates the "Egyptian people for their insistence on continuing the January 25 revolution as shown by the events of the third anniversary" and condemns "brutal attacks against peaceful protesters which left tens martyred.”

Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya, a conservative Islamist group, was a strong supporter of Mohamed Morsi during his one year as president. They are currently part of the Brotherhood-led National Alliance to Support Legitimacy, a group demanding the reinstatement of Morsi and the annulled 2012 constitution.

The statement added that the state offers "false explanations to the current crisis, making it seem as though it is a security crisis although it is at its core political and requires a political solution…the regime is wrong to think that if it hurries presidential elections the conflict will be resolved and stability will be achieved…it will only escalate the conflict and deepen polarisation.”

At least 64 people were killed in Cairo and Giza on Saturday's third anniversary of the revolution in clashes between the security forces and opposition groups, mostly Islamist and some non-Islamist.

Meanwhile, tens of thousands took the streets in celebration, with many of supporters of army chief Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi demanding he run for president.

Interim president Adly Mansour announced Sunday that presidential elections will be held before parliamentary elections, a change to the original roadmap announced after the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi, who hails from the Muslim Brotherhood.

In addition to continuous clashes between security forces and Morsi supporters, an ongoing wave of attacks targeting security forces has struck Egypt since the dispersal of two large pro-Morsi protest camps last August that left hundreds dead.

On Sunday, four army soldiers died and 13 were injured when militants attacked their bus in North Sinai.

Earlier on Saturday, a military helicopter crashed in the restive peninsula leaving 5 officers dead.

Sinai-Based Islamist militant Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis has claimed responsibility for both attacks.

The group also said they were behind Friday's attack that targetted the Cairo security directorate which left four dead.



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