Egypt clashes show no sign of abating despite Morsi’s efforts

Egypt clashes show no sign of abating despite Morsi’s efforts
# 29 January 2013 19:56 (UTC +04:00)

The scuffles came after Egypt’s main opposition group, the National Salvation Front (NSF), rejected an invitation by Morsi for talks and called for massive protests on Friday.

“We will not participate in dialogue that is empty of content,” leading dissident Mohamed ElBaradei said on Monday following a meeting of the NSF.

Opposition leaders say the president’s proposal is not genuine and that they will attend future talks only if a list of conditions is met.

On Sunday, the Egyptian president called for talks in an effort to resolve the political crisis and to contain the violence that has claimed dozens of lives.

Morsi also announced a state of emergency in the cities of Port Said, Suez, and Ismailia for 30 days, staring from Monday. However, on Monday night protesters took to the streets in the three Suez Canal cities in defiance of the curfew imposed by the government.

Meanwhile on Tuesday, Egyptian Defense Minister General Abdel Fattah al-Sissi warned that the current political crisis in the country could lead to the state’s collapse.

Failing to resolve the crisis rocking the African country could lead to “grave repercussions if the political forces do not act" to handle it, al-Sissi said in a post on his Facebook page.

He further said the ongoing conflict between political forces in the African country and their differences about the management of the nation “could lead to a collapse of the state and threaten future generations.”

Ongoing violence in several Egyptian cities, including Cairo, Alexandria, Suez, and Port Said, has left 52 people dead since January 25 when the country marked the second anniversary of the revolution that ousted former dictator Hosni Mubarak.

The deadliest clashes took place in Port Said. Chaos erupted when a court handed down death sentences to 21 people for their role in an incident that saw the death of 74 people following a football match in the city last year.