Egypt’s ruling military council warned that it will act with “utmost determination and force” to prevent chaos in the country amid rising protests against the widening of army powers and suspension of parliament.
The council, in a statement on state television, said that orders issued in the name of the people should be respected, and the decree it issued that appropriates powers to the military at the expense of the presidency was necessary.
Shortly after, Muslim Brotherhood candidate for Egypt's presidency, Mohamed Morsy, said his movement would go on protesting at moves by the ruling military to curb the powers of the president and urged that the election results be announced without delay.
At a news conference three hours after the generals responded to Islamist street protests by rejecting calls to cancel various recent decisions, Morsy also took pains to ease tension. He said he had no problem with the military council, calling it "patriotic", and only disagreed with its latest measures.
The statement from the military leaders comes as Egypt awaits official results from the presidential election to choose a successor to Hosni Mubarak, ousted in a popular uprising last year. The two candidates, the Muslim Brotherhood’s Morsy and former premier Ahmed Shafik, have both claimed they are the winner.
The army council said it’s “not justified” to announce results before they are officially declared. The results were originally due yesterday, then postponed, and are now expected within the next two days.
Morsy did not repeat a claim he has made since last weekend's election that he is the winner - a premature declaration that the army said had caused division. Morsy said on Friday he was waiting for the official result.
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