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Mon, July 1, 2013 | State Information Service

Translation by Egypt’s State Information Service. General Abdel Fattah al-Sissi issued a statement in a televised audio statement on Monday afternoon, calling on political forces to bridge Egypt’s growing divide and agree on an inclusive roadmap for the country’s future within 48 hours. Egypt’s armed forces would suspend the constitution and dissolve an Islamist-dominated parliament under a draft political roadmap to be pursued if Islamist President Mohamed Morsy and the liberal opposition fail to agree by Wednesday. (Egypt Independent/Reuters)

An Egyptian protester holds a picture of defense minister and commander of the armed forces, General Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, with a slogan reading in Arabic “Wake up army, the people are sad. Wake up army, in whose hands have you left us”. March 1, 2013. (Photo: Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/Getty Images)

Statement by the Egyptian Armed Forces:

Everybody on the Egyptian arena and the world at large have witnessed to yesterday’s protests by the great Egyptian people that were meant to express their opinion in an unprecedented peaceful and civilized way. Everybody have seen the movement of the Egyptian people and have heard their voice with the utmost degree of respect and interest. Therefore it was a must that the people receive a response to this movement and to their call by every related party that must shoulder part of the responsibility in such a critical situation which the homeland is passing through.

— The Armed Forces, as a major party to the equation of the future, and out of their national and historical responsibility for protecting the security and safety of the homeland in these dangerous circumstances, confirm the following:

— The Armed Forces will never be party to the circle of politics or rule and will never accept getting out of their outlined role in the genuine democratic thinking which is emanating from the popular will.

— The national security of the State is exposed to great danger in light of the current developments in the country; a state of affairs that lays a responsibility on all parties concerned to act in a way that is commensurate with these dangers.

— The Armed Forces have anticipated earlier the danger of the current situation and what it implies of the demands of the great Egyptian people. Therefore the Armed Forces have set a one-week time as a grace period for all political powers to reach reconciliation and get out of the current crisis. But this one week has elapsed without any response or act on the ground. This state of affairs led the great Egyptian people to take to the streets with full determination and complete freedom in that way that dazzled everybody at the local, regional and international levels and won the respect and appreciation of everybody.

— Wasting more time will not result in but more division and conflict; something which we have warned of and we are still warning against.

— This great people have suffered a lot and found nobody to sympathize with them or care for them; a state of affairs that lays a moral and psychological burden on the Armed Forces who hold that all parties concerned should stop doing anything barring taking care of this great people who proved to be ready to do what is deemed impossible if they found somebody to care for them with sincerity and devotion.

— The Armed Forces are reiterating the call for meeting the demands of the people and give all parties concerned 48 hours as a last ditch chance to shoulder their own responsibility in this historic circumstances of the nation which will never tolerate or forgive any party that would be negligent in undertaking their responsibility.

— The Armed Forces appeal to all parties concerned that if the demands of the people were not met within these 48 hours the Armed Forces will find themselves obliged, out of their national and historical responsibility and out of respect to the demands of the great Egyptian people, to announce a road map for the future along with measures that will be carried out under the Armed Forces’ supervision with the participation of all the spectra and sincere national segments of the society, including the young people who have been and are still, the sparking plug of the great revolution, without any exclusion to any party.

— A big salute of appreciation and respect to the men of the Armed Forces who have been and are still undertaking their responsibility towards the great Egyptian people with all determination and pride.

May God Keep Egypt and its people safe and sound;

May God’s peace and blessings be upon you.

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