Estonian Ambassador to Egypt: Situation More Alarming Than in 2011 (1)

Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi Photo: Reuters/Scanpix
7/3/2013 12:39 PM
Category: Politics

The situation in Egypt is more dangerous than it was two years ago, when the previous regime was toppled, and new presidential elections could become problematic, said Paul Teesalu, Estonia's top diplomat in Egypt.

Speaking on ERR radio on Tuesday, Teesalu said street protests have been taking place since last weekend and bear similarities to the 2011 January protests that were later dubbed, along with similar movements in other countries, Arab Spring.

The difference between the two protests, said the ambassador, lies in the fact that supporters of both sides are on the street and the military's announcement that they could intervene has caused the situation to deteriorate.

Teesalu said that every evening, the opponents of President Mohammed Mursi take to the streets, demanding his resignation as the economic situation in the country has been improved.

Opponents are also calling for the Muslim Brotherhood, who is leading the government, to step back, citing their refusal to involve opposition political forces.

Mursi's backers say that the President was elected in free democratic elections, Teesalu said, adding that new elections are not likely to solve the stand-off, as no new political figures have emerged since the last elections in 2012.

Egypt's parliament, elected in 2011, was dissolved last year, and according to Teesalu, it is difficult to predict any outcome if elections were held again now.

Teesalu added that in principle, he believes the military is not interested in political power, only in restoring the peace on the streets.

According to latest reports from the BBC, the military has given the president a deadline of 17:30 Estonian time, to deal with the situation, which claimed the lives of 16 people only last night.


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