Opposition to meet over Egypt president's talks offer

CAIRO Fri Dec 7, 2012 3:11pm IST

1 of 3. Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood welcome tanks arriving outside the Egyptian presidential palace in Cairo December 6, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Asmaa Waguih

Related Topics

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's opposition coalition, the National Salvation Front, will meet on Friday to review a call by President Mohamed Mursi for a national dialogue to resolve a crisis after his decision to expand his powers, a leading opposition politician said.

In a televised speech late on Thursday, Mursi proposed a meeting on Saturday with political leaders, "revolutionary youth" and legal figures to discuss the way forward after a referendum on a new constitution set for December 15.

Seven people were killed and hundreds injured this week in clashes around the presidential palace which followed Mursi's November 22 decree that awarded himself extra powers and his decision to rush through a new constitution, written by an Islamist-dominated assembly that was opposed by liberals and others.

"We have decided to meet this afternoon and discuss the whole issue and the proposal and speech by the president. We want a collective stand on that," Amr Moussa, a presidential candidate and former Arab League chief, told Reuters, adding the precise time had yet to be finalised.

Opposition groups have called for protests on Friday against Mursi and his decree. One prominent protest movement has rejected the president's offer of talks.

Among the demands of the liberal-leaning Front, Moussa said the opposition coalition believed a referendum on a draft constitution should be delayed.

"We consider that the referendum at that date will not enable the people to address the constitution and read it and exchange views on it and make their proposals," Moussa said.

The Front would also consider Mursi's comments suggesting he was ready to reconsider elements of his decree. "The mood is still very solid on the demands that we have expressed and stressed," Moussa said.

The Front, which alongside Moussa includes prominent figures such as former U.N. diplomat Mohamed ElBaradei and popular leftist Hamdeen Sabahy, has previously demanded Mursi scrap his decree, postpone the referendum and redraft the constitution.

(Writing by Edmund Blair; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

FILED UNDER:

Sony Cyber Attack

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Exit Polls

Exit Polls

BJP unlikely to form Jammu & Kashmir govt - polls.  Full Article 

Forceful Conversions

Forceful Conversions

BJP distances itself from religious conversions.  Full Article 

Photo

Fund Raising

Flipkart raises $700 million in fresh funding.   Full Article 

Reforms Push

Reforms Push

Modi may order insurance, coal reforms if vote delayed - officials.  Full Article 

Economic Pulse

Economic Pulse

Crank up public spending to revive growth - chief economic adviser.  Full Article 

Reuters Exclusive

Reuters Exclusive

India looks to sway Americans with nuclear power insurance plan  Full Article 

Down Under

Down Under

Magic Johnson inspires Australia to second test win.  Full Article 

Going International

Going International

Bollywood’s Priyanka Chopra sets sights on American TV.  Full Article 

India This Week

India This Week

Some of our best photos from this week.   Full Coverage 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device   Full Coverage