The Armed Forces warned political forces it would intervene if they do not reach a solution to the ongoing stalemate in Egypt, a statement aired on television and posted on the official military Facebook page said today.
The statement came in response to nationwide protests Sunday, when millions took to the streets to demand the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi. Calls for civil disobedience and continuous protests have been made.
"The Armed Forces repeats its call to respond to the people's demands and gives everyone a 48-hour deadline to carry the burden of these historic circumstances. [The Armed Forces] won't tolerate anyone doing less than what's needed to carry their responsibility," the statement read.
The statement added that the Armed Forces would resort to announcing a road map for the future as part of its responsibility and in respect to the demands of the people, if political forces fail to solve the stalemate.
The Armed Forces highlighted its lack of interest in being part of the political process or in disrupting the democratic process. However, it claimed that national security has been endangered and that the situation has become precarious. For these reasons, a previous one-week deadline was given for political forces to solve the problem, but there was no response, the military said.
Some of the June 30 protests have been calling for a military take over as the only alternative to Morsi's resignation. However, many also fear a military take over would hamper the road to democracy.
The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces temporarily took power after former President Hosni Mubarak stepped down during mass protests in 2011. But its departure from power in 2012 was prompted by repeated protests, marked by violence.
Below is the Armed Forces statement:
Egypt and the world have seen protests by the great Egyptian people expressing their view and their will in a peaceful, civil and unprecedented manner. Everyone saw the movement of the Egyptian people and heard their voice with care and respect. It indispensable that the people get a response to their action and their demands from all parties that hold responsibility in these dangerous circumstances.
The Armed Forces is a main part of the future and feels it has a national and historic responsibility to protect the nation. Accordingly it confirms the following:
- The Armed Forces won't be part of the political circle or rule, and will not surpass the role that was drawn for it through the democratic thought that came from the will of the people.
- National security is facing real danger with the recent developments, which throws responsibilities on all of us, each according to their positions and what needs to be done in order to fend off these risks.
- The Armed Forces had earlier felt the danger of the current situation as well as the demands of the great Egyptian people. That is why it had set a one-week ultimatum for all political forces to come together and help the country out of the current crisis. But this week has passed without any initiative or act. This is what led the people to persistently and autonomously take to the streets in an impressive way, which has raised admiration and attention inside and outside of the country.
- Wasting more time will only lead to more divisions, of which we have been warning.
- The people have suffered and not found anyone to give care and kindness, and this presents a moral and psychological burden for the Armed Forces, which finds it necessary for all to stop anything other than embracing the people, who have proven their readiness to do the impossible if they feel loyalty and dedication toward them.
- The Armed Forces repeats its call to respond to the people's demands and gives everyone a 48-hour deadline to carry the burden of these historic circumstances. [The Armed Forces] won't tolerate anyone doing less than what's needed to carry their responsibility.
- The Armed Forces warns that if the demands of the people are not met, it will be obligated, due to its national and historical duties, out of respect for the demands of the great Egyptian people, to announce a road map and measures for the future that it would oversee in collaboration with all the loyal national factions and currents, including the youth, who were and remain the spark of the revolution, without sidelining anyone.
A salute of appreciation and fondness to the faithful and loyal men of the Armed Forces who have borne and continue to bear their national responsibility toward the Egyptian people with determination, persistence and pride.