ElBaradei rejects the Islamist president's call for dialogue

Egypt's main opposition coalition rejected the Egyptian president's call for dialogue, unless their conditions are met. (Al Arabiya)

Egypt's main opposition coalition has rejected the Islamist president's call for dialogue to resolve the country's political crisis, unless their conditions are met.



Monday's announcement was made by reform leader Mohammed ElBaradei and other top figures in the National Salvation Front.



ElBaradei said President Mohammed Morsi must first appoint a national unity government and name a commission to amend the disputed constitution ratified last month.



"The dialogue to which the president invited us is to do with form and not content," said ElBaradei, Nobel Peace laureate. "We support any dialogue if it has a clear agenda that can shepherd the nation to the shores of safety."



The opposition's stand is likely to fuel the political crisis roiling the nation.

Curfews would be imposed on the same three provinces from 9:00 pm until 6:00 am, he added.

"I have said I am against any emergency measures but I have said that if I must stop bloodshed and protect the people then I will act," Mursi said.

He warned that he was ready to take further measures if the deadly violence that swept over Egypt since Friday does not end.

"If I must I will do much more for the sake of Egypt. This is my duty and I will not hesitate," the president warned.

He also held out an olive branch to the opposition and political leaders across Egypt, inviting them for talks on Monday, saying "there is no alternative to dialogue."

"I have decided to invite all political leaders to a dialogue tomorrow. A presidential statement with all the details will be issued later," Mursi said.

"There is no going back to freedom and democracy... the rule of law and social justice that the revolution has paved."

His comments came after rioting sparked by death sentences being passed on fans of a local football team rocked Egypt's Port Said for a second straight day on Sunday, leaving another six people dead and more than 460 injured, medics said.

Morsi insisted that the verdicts that triggered the violence "must be respected by all of us."

He condemned the violence as "a violation of the law and a violation of the revolution."

The president also said he had instructed the interior ministry to "use all decisive force against those who attack the security of the people, government buildings, those who use weapons, block roads, those who throw stones on innocents..."

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Last Update: Monday, 11 March 2013 KSA 19:26 - GMT 16:26
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