Egypt`s president dismisses calls for early vote
Cairo: Egypt`s embattled president on Friday dismissed calls for early presidential elections as attackers torched the Cairo campaign headquarters of a youth group petitioning for Mohammed Mursi`s removal from office.
The developments come as tensions rise ahead of June 30, when Mursi marks one year in power as Egypt`s first freely elected president following the 2011 uprising that toppled autocrat Hosni Mubarak.
In a four-page interview with the state-run Al-Ahram daily ahead of the anniversary, Morsi said demands for an early presidential vote are both "absurd and illegal."
He also warned against violence during upcoming demonstrations, which the opposition plans for the anniversary to demand his ouster.
"Violating the law, the use of violence or inciting for it are unacceptable and will not be permitted," Mursi told the paper today. "We are in a country with a constitution and law. We had free and fair elections and the talk about early presidential elections is absurd and illegal."
The lengthy interview was a throwback to Mubarak`s era when the paper served as a government mouthpiece, glorifying the regime`s perceived successes and never challenging authorities.
Before dawn today, attackers stormed and partially torched the downtown Cairo headquarters of a volunteer youth group, which has been gaining momentum lately and which is collecting signatures for Mursi`s removal.
The drive, known as "Tamarod" or "Rebel" in Arabic, is helping galvanise an opposition that has long been in disarray and demoralised. So far, the volunteers say they have collected about 7 million signatures.
They hope for 15 million, believing the sheer number could push Mursi out of office by June 30. That`s 2 million more than the number of votes Mursi garnered in last year`s presidential election, which he won with 52 per cent of the votes. Egypt`s population is around 90 million.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- Kejriwal knew Tomar possessed fake degree, says Yogendra Yadav
- Ajinkya Rahane to captain India on Zimbabwe tour; Dhoni, Kohli rested
- Shiv Sena slams HC order banning erection of pandals on roads
- Top leader of NSCN(K) arrested for Manipur attacks by NIA
- Vijender Singh turns professional boxer, to miss 2016 Rio Olympics
- India vs Zimbabwe: Ajinkya Rahane to lead; MS Dhoni, Virat Kohli rested
- Tihar Jail's security breached: Lt Governor Najeeb Jung orders probe, Centre seeks report
- Chinese military research academy praises India's main battle tank Arjun, says it's 'very good'
- Gangster Abu Salem ready to tie the knot with girl seeking to marry him
- Vijender Singh brings down curtains on India career, turns professional