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Egyptian official: No intention to declare state of emergency

Published: Updated:

Egypt has no intention to declare a state of emergency, an official said on Monday, two days after at least 72 supporters of ousted President Mohamed Mursi were killed at a Cairo protest.

The interim president “has promised to commission the prime minister with more authority to create a civil state, which negates the need to declare an emergency state,” al-Wasat News quoted Ahmed Maslamani, media adviser to the interim president, as saying.

On Monday, a group of Egyptian non-governmental organizations called for the interior minister to be dismissed over the killings.

Catherine Ashton, the European Union’s foreign policy chief, on Monday pressed Egyptian authorities to step back from a growing confrontation with the Muslim Brotherhood, from which Mursi hails.

Ashton was the first overseas envoy to visit the country since Saturday’s deadly violence.

It was her second trip there since Mursi’s ouster on July 3.

Ashton met General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the head of the army who was behind the overthrow of Egypt’s first freely-elected president, Reuters reported.

She also held talks with interim Deputy President Mohamed al-Baradei, and interim Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy.

There were no immediate details on the talks.

Earlier, Ashton said she would press for a “fully inclusive transition process, taking in all political groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood,” Reuters quoted her as saying.

Baradei said he had told Ashton that the country’s new leadership was doing all it could to “reach a peaceful way out of the current crisis, that preserves the blood of all Egyptians,” the MENA news agency reported.

(With Reuters)