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Army must ensure security and defend democracy in Egypt

By Norway - Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Army must ensure security and defend democracy in Egypt
Army must ensure security and defend democracy in Egypt
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OSLO, Norway, July 4, 2013/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- “Norway regrets that the political process did not lead to a broadly supported solution for Egypt and that the army finally intervened, removed President Morsi from power and suspended the constitution. Norway has consistently encouraged President Morsi and the opposition to find solutions to the country's major challenges through a broad and inclusive process. We must acknowledge the fact that they have not succeeded,” commented Minister of Foreign Affairs Espen Barth Eide.

“Norway gives its full support to the democratisation process in Egypt. It is vital that a civilian government is rapidly formed and that the process towards democratic elections is started. All groups in Egyptian society must be included in the time ahead.

“The army is now responsible for ensuring stability, safeguarding the civilian population and preventing violence. The obligation to protect the population applies to all groups. I would particularly warn against imprisoning politicians. No one is served by political repression or violent confrontations,” said Mr Eide.

Like many other countries, Norway has given its full support to the development of an Egyptian democracy and has expressed its view that the outcome of democratic elections must be respected. Over the last year, the parties have not reached agreement on fundamental aspects of democracy. Norway has therefore cooperated with both the regime and the opposition in an attempt to find a political solution to the growing conflict.

“Norway upholds the right of the Egyptian people to demonstrate in support of their views. A broad popular and democratic movement is entitled to be heard. I would warn all concerned against an intensification of the already serious situation as this could further deepen divisions,” said Mr Eide.