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Egyptian cabinet tasks interior minister with confronting Islamist sit-ins


08:28, August 01, 2013

CAIRO, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Egypt's cabinet on Wednesday asked the interior minister to take necessary measures to end the Islamist sit-ins and deal with any threats against national security, state TV reported.

In a televised statement, Information Minister Doriah Sharaf el- Din said the continuation of the dangerous situation at Rabaa Al Adawiya square in Cairo and al-Nahda square in Giza, where Islamists supporting ousted President Mohamed Morsi were holding protests, is a threat to national security and citizens.

"The cabinet has decided to take all measures to confront these risks and put an end to them," Doriah said. "Consequent terrorism and road blockages are no longer acceptable."

The cabinet's decision came after people took to the streets on Friday upon a call by Defense Minister Abdel-Fatah Sisi to condemn terrorism and violence and authorize the military to deal with perpetrators.

However, Ahmed Aaref, spokesman of the Muslim Brotherhood from which Morsi hails, described the cabinet's decision as "terrorism. "

In a statement published by CNN's Arabic website, Aaref said Morsi's supporters will continue their protests and any threats will not terrorize them.

"They are collecting the firewood since a while, and they are now announcing setting the Egyptian people ablaze," Aaref said, denouncing the interim cabinet.

The interior minister is holding meetings with security leaders to study the required procedures according to the available information at the places of sit-ins, a security source was quoted by official news agency MENA as saying.

The source said there are huge amounts of automatic weapons and dangerous elements at Rabaa and Nahda squares.

Securing peaceful protesters tops the current security studies to deal with the situation, as some of them are used by the Muslim Brotherhood's leaders as human shields, he said.

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