Egyptian army abruptly postpones “unity” talks

Updated 12 December 2012
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Egyptian army abruptly postpones “unity” talks

CAIRO: Efforts to resolve Egypt’s rapidly worsening political crisis suffered a blow on Wednesday when the army abruptly postponed “unity” talks that the opposition had minutes earlier said they would attend.
Confirmation that the secular, liberal opposition coalition would join the meeting after boycotting reconciliation talks hosted last week by Islamist President Mohamed Mursi had raised hopes of an end to street protests and deadly violence.
The latest convulsion in Egypt’s transition to democracy was brought on by a decree last month from Mursi in which he awarded himself sweeping powers to ram through a new constitution.
The constitution, to be voted on in a national referendum, is a necessary prelude to parliamentary elections due early next year.
Mursi’s move caused huge controversy, dividing the Arab world’s most populous state and bringing thousands of pro- and anti-government protesters onto the streets in the worst upheaval since the fall of Hosni Mubarak almost two years ago.
The unrest has so far claimed seven lives in clashes between the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood and the opposition. But the army has yet to use force to keep protesters away from the presidential palace, now ringed with tanks, barbed wire and concrete barricades.
The postponement of the talks came as Egyptians abroad began voting at embassies in the referendum on the new constitution that Mursi fast-tracked through an Islamist-dominated drafting assembly.
The start of the voting process was a setback for the opposition, which had hoped to delay the plebiscite.
The main opposition coalition will push for a “no” vote in the referendum rather than boycotting it.
“We will vote ‘no’,” opposition politician and former Arab League chief Amr Moussa told Reuters. Another senior opposition figure also announced that the group would push for a “no” vote.


Gazan dies of wounds from Israel border clash: ministry

Updated 24 June 2018
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Gazan dies of wounds from Israel border clash: ministry

  • A Palestinian man shot by Israeli forces two days ago during clashes on the Gaza border died of his wounds early Sunday
  • At least 134 Palestinians have been killed in clashes since mass protests broke out along the Gaza border on March 30

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories: A Palestinian man shot by Israeli forces two days ago during clashes on the Gaza border died of his wounds early Sunday, the health ministry in the Hamas-ruled territory said.
“Osama Khalil Abu Khater, 29-years-old, died of wounds to his stomach after being shot by the Israeli enemy east of Khan Yunis the day before yesterday,” ministry spokesman Ashraf Al-Qudra said.
Palestinian sources said he was shot during a border clash.
At least 134 Palestinians have been killed in clashes since mass protests broke out along the Gaza border on March 30.
No Israelis have been killed.
The protests peaked on May 14 when at least 62 Palestinians were killed as thousands approached the heavily guarded border fence on the same day the United States moved its Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
Israel says its use of live fire is necessary to defend its borders and stop infiltrations. It accuses Gaza’s Islamist rulers Hamas of seeking to use the protests as cover for attacks.