Egypt is waging a war against the forces of terrorism and extremism, an Egyptian presidential adviser has said amid turmoil in the country that has claimed hundreds of lives.
“We are facing a war launched by extremist forces escalating every day to a terrorist war,” Mostafa Hegazy told a news conference on Saturday.
“Forces of extremism intend to cripple our journey towards pure bright future, aiming and willing to bring to the whole state into total failure.”
Hegazy said the crisis would be handled by “security measures within the framework of law”.
His comments came after days of violence in which hundreds of anti-coup protesters have died. On Wednesday, an estimated 600 were killed as police cleared sit-in protests in Cairo.
Two days later, a “day of rage” organised by the Muslim Brotherhood and groups under the Anti-Coup Alliance banner, turned to bloodshed as marchers were fired on.
Hegazy claimed Egyptians were “more united today than at any time before. United against forces of terrorism and darkness”. The slogan, “Egypt against terrorism”, was overlayed by the Egyptian television channel which broadcast his speech.
“This war will end. And we will end up triumphant, not only by security measures but also by the rule of law and in the perimeters of human rights which we are adamant to maintain,” he said.
“I would like to emphasise that what we witness in the Egyptian streets can never, under any circumstances, be labelled as a political difference.”
Hegazy ciriticised the international media for its coverage of the unrest, including attacks on police stations and churches. “Many of these stories are missing [on the international media],” he said.
Hegazy also said that Egyptian people took to the streets on June 30 against “theological and religious fascism”, referring to rallies that led to Morsi’s removal in the coup in early July.