Opposition parties in Egypt that have formed a coalition planning mass protests on June 30, a date marking President Mohammed Mursi’s first anniversary in power, have announced a roadmap for their rallies.
Speaking at a conference in Giza on Saturday, the bloc’s figureheads announced plans for the week leading up to June 30.
Among the plans, a human chain protest against the Muslim Brotherhood, which Mursi hails from, and smaller demonstrations across the country will call for more people to sign up for a “rebellion” petition urging Mursi to hold early elections.
“On 27 June, a rally is planned to take place in Cairo’s Sayeda Zeinab district. On 28 June, another rally is planned to start from Cairo’s Al-Azhar district, marching to Tahrir Square protesting the use of mosques in urging people not to rebel against the president,” Egypt’s Ahram Online new site reported.
“As for 30 June, political representatives said several demonstrations are planned to snowball through the different parts of Egypt. The final starting destinations are to be announced end of week.
“The political groups announced they clearly stand against the military playing any role in the process,” the report added.
Mursi on Saturday renewed his calls for dialogue with the opposition in an attempt to ease deep political rifts ahead of the planned protests.
“I have said it before. I urge everyone to sit together to discuss what would achieve the interests of our nation,” Mursi said in an interview published in the state-owned Akhbar al-Youm newspaper.
The interview came a day after tens of thousands of Mursi supporters massed in Cairo in a show of strength.
Mursi and the Brotherhood have turned their organizational prowess into electoral success since the 2011 revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak, but a diverse opposition coalition now hopes to force Mursi to resign by demonstrating en masse on the first anniversary of his inauguration on June 30.
“I will continue in my pursuit for contact, and I may speed up parliamentary elections as a way of involving everyone in an agreed method to manage our differences,” Mursi said.
“The call for protest on June 30 reflects the atmosphere of freedom granted to us by the revolution” of 2011, he said.
Mursi appealed for calm and accused those who supported the regime of ousted President Hosni Mubarak of inciting instability.
“They want to bring back the past because the revolution harmed their interests. (People) must stop their evil plans because they do not want calm and stability for Egypt,” Mursi said.