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Egypt reiterates rejection to AU suspension


08:36, July 31, 2013

CAIRO, July 30 (Xinhua) -- Egyptian officials reiterated Tuesday their rejection to the decision to suspend Egypt's participation in the African Union (AU)'s activities.

The remarks came at a time when Alpha Oumar Konare, head of a nine-member African delegation currently visiting the country, stressed the decision was not part of a conspiracy against Egypt's pioneering role in Africa.

Two days after the ouster of Egypt's Islamist-oriented President Mohamed Morsi on July 3, the AU's Peace and Security Council suspended the country's membership, describing the overthrow of Morsi as "unconstitutional."

In response, Egypt sent high-level envoys to African countries to explain the Egyptian point of view, asking them to revoke the pan-Africa organization's decision.

The AU high-level panel for Egypt is visiting Egypt from July 27 to August 5 to collect information and consult with the Egyptian authorities as well as other stakeholders the situation here.

Since its arrival on Sunday, the African group has met with interim President Adli Mansour, Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi, Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmi, and representatives from the Tamarud, a campaign launched earlier this year to demand Morsi's stepping down, and the 6 April youth movement.

During his meeting with the AU panel Tuesday, Minister of Transitional Justice Amin el-Mahdi reiterated Egypt's rejection to the African decision, stressing that the terms of membership suspension are not applicable in the case of Egypt.

"The AU Peace and Security Council has failed to see the popular revolution on June 30. The military stance was in line with the people's demands to have an interim civilian president and to amend the constitution."

"The Armed Forces intervened to protect millions of peaceful citizens and prevent clashes after a political solution could not be reached," el-Mahdi said, underlining that what happened in Egypt cannot be considered as "unconstitutional change" of governments.

Meanwhile, Egypt's Foreign Minister Fahmi said the "rushed" African Peace and Security Council decision was based on " completely false" information.

For his part, Konare refused to answer a question whether he describes what happened in Egypt as a military coup or popular revolution. While his delegation also wants to meet with Morsi, reportedly held incommunicado since his overthrow, and representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood, from which Morsi hails, the Salafist party, and the country's religious leaders.

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