The Chief of the Egyptian military has given Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi 48 hours to meet the demands of the people, according to a statement posted on their Facebook page.
Military chief Abdul Fattah al Sisi said that the army will then intervene to seek a political transition (though it will not itself be a political entity at that point).
According to our source on the ground, Egyptian police are out in the streets telling protesters they are protected, and to continue until Morsi capitulates.
The demands of the people seem to largely revolve around resisting Morsi’s intentions to install a more religious government, basing law around Islamic Shariah.
Protesters trashed the headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood — the largest, most influential political party, which generally pushes for laws that are Islamic in nature.
Al Jazeera reported yesterday that military tanks and vehicles started appearing in the square, apparently in preparation for this development from Al Sisi.
The crowd in Tahrir Square is reportedly jubilant at the general’s statement, which hints at a coup if Morsi does not cooperate.
Well-known Egyptian blogger The Big Pharaoh laid it out bluntly in a tweet.
We are the first country in human history to have a countdown to a military coup.
— The Big Pharaoh (@TheBigPharaoh) July 1, 2013
Citizens expected this move from the military general, who just a week ago said he would not allow Egypt to descend into “a dark tunnel of conflict.”
From a translated version of the statement:
The armed forces will not be a party in politics or government department does not satisfy that out of its Decree her role in the authentic democratic thought emanating from the will of the people.
Here’s the entire statement, but keep in mind it’s been translated through Google translate:
A statement from the General Command of the Armed Forces
Egyptian arena and the whole world witnessed yesterday demonstrations and a departure for the great people of Egypt to express their opinion and will, peacefully and civilized, which is unprecedented.
Everyone saw the movement of the Egyptian people and heard their voices with the utmost respect and attention … It is imperative to have people in response to the movement and on the appeal of each party to bear some degree of responsibility in these dangerous circumstances surrounding the homeland.
The Egyptian armed forces as a major party in the equation of the future, and based on historical and national responsibility in protecting the safety and security of this nation, emphasizes the following:
The armed forces will not be a party in politics or government if the department does not satisfy this Decree and acknowledge the role in the authentic democratic thought emanating from the will of the people.
The national security of the state is at severe risk about the developments taking place in the country, which cast us, each according to its responsibilities, to deal as befits order to prevent these risks.
I have sensed the seriousness of the present situation early, and the armed forces carries with it the demands of the great Egyptian people … Therefore we have already identified a week’s deadline for all political forces in the country to agree and get out of the crisis. But this past week, without the appearance of any gesture or act … which led to … the insistence of the people their full freedom … aroused admiration and appreciation and interest on the internal, regional and international stage.
The loss of more time will only bring more division and wrestle, who warned us not continue to warn him.
I have suffered this people Karim did not find it accompanied by or Ihno upon which cast the burden of moral and myself on the armed forces that you find compelled to stop everyone from anything other than embrace this people proud, which proved its willingness to achieve the impossible if he felt loyalty and dedication from him.
The re-armed forces reiterates its call to meet the demands of the people and everyone slowed [for the past 48] hours as a last chance to bear the burden of historical circumstance which the country is going through, which will not tolerate or forgive any shortened forces in carrying out responsibilities.
Calls upon the armed forces, that if the people’s demands did not materialize within the deadline, we will be compelled, based on the responsibility of national, historical and respect for the demands of the great people of Egypt, to announce a map of the future and procedures for overseeing the implementation and the participation of all factions and national trends sincere including youth, who was and still is a suicide glorious revolution … And without exclusion or retirement of one.
Tribute and Azaz to the men of the armed forces loyal faithful who were and still متحملين national responsibility toward the great people of Egypt with all the resolve and determination and pride.
God save Egypt and its people, proud and great
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