Thursday, January 31, 2013

Egypt opposition to protest after deadly week

CAIRO (Reuters) - Opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi have called mass demonstrations on Friday, raising the prospect of more bloodshed despite a pledge by politicians to back off after the deadliest week of his seven months in office.
Protests marking the second anniversary of the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak have killed nearly 60 people since January 25. It prompted the head of the army - the institution that effectively ran Egypt for six decades until Mursi's election - to warn that the state was on the verge of collapse.
The country's most influential Islamic scholar hauled in rival political leaders for crisis talks on Thursday and persuaded them to sign up to a charter disavowing violence and committing to dialogue as a way to end the crisis.
But barely had those talks ended at a mediaeval university, when Mursi's foes called for new nationwide protests, including a march on the presidential palace in Cairo, which his followers see as a provocative assault on a symbol of his legitimacy.