UN human rights office expresses concern over violent clashes in Egypt

New York, US (PANA) - The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), on Tuesday said it is alarmed at the sharp escalation of the political crisis in Egypt and expressed concern that dozens of people have reportedly been killed or wounded following the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi last week.

PANA quoted a statement by the Gevena-based human rights office as stating that on
Friday alone, more than 30 people were killed and about 1,000 injured in various clashes
across the country, while on Monday, at least 51 people were reportedly killed and some
300 injured outside the Republican Guard compound.

The OHCHR spokesperson, Ms. Cecile Pouilly, said: "We remind the Egyptian authorities that any incidents resulting in deaths and injuries require prompt, thorough and transparent
investigation and those found to be guilty of wrong doing should be brought to justice."

She, however, said that the office welcomed the announcement by the interim Head of State
that an investigation into Monday's tragic incident has been ordered.

Ms. Pouilly expressed the hope that the probe would be carried out by an independent and impartial body and its findings made public.

"We call on all sides to refrain from resorting to violence and on protesters to maintain the peaceful nature of their demonstrations.

"We also call on the military and law enforcement officials to show utmost restraint and make sure that they comply, at all times, with international human rights obligations and
international standards on policing," she noted.

The spokesperson also urged all parties to engage in a constructive dialogue and in a
broad-based and inclusive process to move the country forward.

"We reaffirm our readiness to assist the Egyptian people in all efforts to overcome the crisis and move towards strengthening human rights and building a legislative and institutional framework ensuring democracy and the rule of law,” she added.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navi Pillay, have also stressed the need for all parties in Egypt to exercise restraint, protect human rights and resort to dialogue to peacefully resolve differences.

PANA learnt that on Monday, the interim authority announced plans for the formation of a panel to amend the Constitution, the holding of a referendum on proposed constitutional changes, and the holding of parliamentary elections.

The plans, however, have been rejected by the Muslim Brotherhood, the party to which
Mr. Morsi belongs.

The Egyptian military deposed Mr. Morsi on 3 July, suspended the Constitution and paved they way for an interim government.

Since then, Mr. Morsi’s foes and supporters have continued to face off in huge demonstrations, with security forces and police adding to the deepening chaos.
-0- PANA AA/VAO 9July2013

09 july 2013 18:25:44

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