UNITED NATIONS, United States / United States, Aug 17, 2013 (AFP)
UNÂ Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expressed alarm at the turmoil in Egypt onÂ Saturday, urging an end to violent protests and citing the “excessive use ofÂ force” in handling them.
“He strongly condemns attacks on churches, hospitals, and other publicÂ facilities, which he finds unacceptable,” Ban’s spokesman said in a statement.
“Whatever the grievances, there is no justification for destruction ofÂ infrastructure and property so important to Egypt’s future.”
Egyptian police cleared Islamist protesters from a Cairo mosqueÂ on SaturdayÂ after a standoff that included exchanges of fire, as the death toll from fourÂ days ofÂ violence surpassed 750.
Security forces dragged supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi fromÂ the Al-Fath mosque, passing through angry crowds who tried to beat theÂ Islamists, calling them “terrorists”.
Ban’s statement said that preventing further loss of life should beÂ Egyptians’ “highest priority at this dangerous moment”.
“He urges those in the street and those in authority to use maximumÂ restraint and shift immediately to de-escalation.
“He appeals to the authorities and to the political leaders to adopt aÂ credible plan to contain the violence and revive the political processÂ hijacked by violence,” it added.
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