BEIJING, Aug. 19 (Xinhua) -- An alliance of Egyptian islamist groups has canceled a series of public events due to fears of being attacked.
The Alliance for Supporting Democracy, which comprises 33 Islamic movements including the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), called off two press conferences and several marches in Cairo Sunday, claiming snipers may have been deployed along march routes.
Despite the cancellations, tensions between security forces and supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi remain high amid international calls for a return to dialogue.
Egyptian Defense Minister Abdel Fatah al-Sisi said Sunday his country would stand firm against any attempt to attack government and religious institutions, according to the military's Facebook page.
Sisi appeared to be directing his remarks at the MB.
"Those, who think that the country and the people will kneel in front of the violence, must reconsider their thoughts," Sisi said, adding he would not keep silent about the attempts by some people to burn the country, terrorize people and send a message to foreign media that civil war was underway in Egyptian streets.
Interim Prime Minister Hazem al-Beblawi also issued a statement the same day, saying Egypt would continue to face terrorism firmly and decisively ahead of implementing its roadmap, which gives priority to amending the constitution and running parliamentary elections followed by a presidential poll.
On Saturday, Hazem al-Beblawi officially proposed disbanding the MB, a move being studied by the government.
Last Wednesday, Egyptian security forces moved to clear two camps of Morsi supporters in Cairo, and at least 866 people have been killed across the country since then, according to Health Ministry records.
Hours after the raids on the camps, Egypt's interim government declared a on-month nationwide state of emergency, imposing a curfew on Cairo and 10 provinces and allowing security forces to detain civilians indefinitely without charge.
Countries and organizations around the world condemned or expressed concern over the violence in Egypt, urging Egyptian political parties to exercise restraint to avoid further escalation.
President Barack Obama strongly condemned the steps taken by the Egyptian interim government and immediately announced the cancellation of joint military exercises, saying the U.S.'s traditional cooperation with Egypt "cannot continue as usual."
But the Obama Administration has refused to suspend 1.3 billion U.S. dollars in annual military aid, despite divisons in the Congress on whether to cut off aid to its important Middle East ally.
The European Union's 28 members are to meet in Brussels at 0800 GMT Monday to decide the bloc's stance on the situation.
EU leaders stressed "the calls for democracy and fundamental freedoms from the Egyptian population cannot be disregarded, much less washed away in blood." They also said they would consider a suspension of aid and loans to the country.
However, there was little sign the bloodshed had come to an end as 36 members of the MB, from which Morsi hails, died in an attempted jailbreak Sunday, official news agency MENA reported.
Armed clashes broke out between security forces and militants who intercepted and attacked police vehicles carrying detainees affiliated with the MB to Abou Zaabal Prison in Qalyubiya province, 60 km north of the capital Cairo.
The militants tried to free the detainees and took a police officer hostage, while security forces fired tear gas in response, MENA said. Some detainees suffocated while several militants were shot dead in the clash.
On Saturday, Egypt's security forces managed to evacuate Al-Fatah mosque in downtown Cairo, which had been occupied by Morsi supporters. At least 79 people died in the clashes and some 612 people were given 15 days in custody pending investigations.
Egypt has been undergoing a democratic transition since the fall of President Hosni Mubarak two years ago. Last month, Morsi, the first democratically elected president, was deposed by the armed forces after only one year in office.
The constitution was suspended and an interim government was then established.
CAIRO, Aug. 18 (Xinhua) -- The Egyptian interim government is sounding a warning that the country is facing a war of terror, vowing to defeat it by force and law.
Egypt is facing a war waged by "terrorist forces," Egyptian presidential spokesman Mostafa Hegazi told reporters in Cairo on Saturday in reference to recent clashes between security forces and supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi across the country. Full story
CAIRO, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- Egypt's security forces have managed to evacuate a mosque in downtown Cairo previously occupied by supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi, while Egypt's cabinet said it considers banning the Muslim Brotherhood group.
Security forces have the full control of the situation at Fatah Mosque at Ramses Square following successful mediation headed by the Al-Azhar, Egypt's top Sunni Islamic institution. Full story
CAIRO, Aug. 17 (Xinhua) -- Egypt is facing a war waged by " terrorist forces," a presidential spokesman said Saturday in reference to recent clashes between security men and supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi across the country.
Spokesman Mostafa Hegazi told reporters here that what is happening in Egypt and the protests held by Morsi's supporters were "acts of real terror" instead of a political dispute. Full story