[QODLink]
Middle East

Egypt army chief vows to use full force

General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi says self-restraint will not continue against those who "want to destroy Egypt".

Last Modified: 19 Aug 2013 08:56
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

The Egyptian army chief Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has said he will no longer restrain his forces from confronting "attackers who want to destroy Egypt", in his first public comments since a security crackdown on anti-coup protesters that left an estimated 600 people dead.

"Our self-restraint will not continue. We will not accept any more attacks. We will meet with full force. Attackers want to destroy Egypt," he said in a speech televised on Egyptian television on Sunday.

He vowed to stand firm in the face of violence. "Whoever imagines violence will make the state and Egyptians kneel must reconsider; we will never be silent in the face of the destruction of the country," he said.

Sisi removed president Mohamed Morsi on 3 July in a coup, saying he could not ignore the widespread protests against Morsi's rule.

'We are guardians'

Egypt has since spiralled into violence, with hundreds of Morsi's supporters from the Muslim Brotherhood and other anti-coup groups being killed by government forces during protests. On August 14, an estimated 600 were killed when riot police moved in on two huge sit-in protest camps in Cairo.

In more conciliatory language, Sisi said there was "room for everyone" in Egypt and that his forces would not  "conspire" to take power.

"The will of the Egyptian people is free, their will is free, they can choose whoever they want to rule them, and we are the guardians of this will," he said as members of the audience - mostly military and police officers - applauded his comments.

"The army and the police right now are the guardians of the will of the people with regard to choosing who their leaders will be.

"I said previously that Egyptians if they want to change the world, they are capable of that, and I tell the Egyptian people now that if you want to build Egypt and its future, you will and you can, and you can make it 'Egypt the mother of all nations' Egypt will be as big as the world itself, with God's will."

337

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
About 500,000 participated around the globe in the Peoples Climate March, and Al Jazeera spoke to some in New York.
Separatist movements in Spain, Belgium and Italy may face headwinds following Scotland's decision to stay in the UK.
A fishing trawler carrying 500 migrants across the Mediterranean was rammed by another boat, causing hundreds to drown.
Anti-immigration Sweden Democrats party - with roots in the neo-Nazi movement - recently won 12.9 percent of the vote.
Palestinian doctor who lost three daughters in previous Gaza war is fighting to bring 100 wounded kids to Canada.