Sweden’s foreign minister delivered a furious put-down to the Egyptian ambassador on Twitter, as reports emerged of dozens more dead in Cairo clashes.
Carl Bildt’s asked Ambassador Osama ElMagdoub whether the protesters were “shooting themselves” at the demonstrations, as the diplomat accused Bildt of not understanding Egypt.
Security forces have clashed with supporters of Egypt’s ousted president with at least 65 protesters feared dead in what the Muslim Brotherhood named a new massacre worse even than the killing of 50 Morsi supporters outside a central mosque in early July.
Saturday’s clashes were sparked when pro-Morsi protesters sought to expand their main Cairo sit-in camp by moving onto a nearby main boulevard, only to be confronted by police and armed civilians – reportedly residents of nearby neighborhoods, Reuters reported.
Speaking on Saturday morning, William Hague, the Foreign Secretary said: “I am deeply concerned by recent events in Egypt, and condemn the use of force against protesters which has led to the loss of lives.
“I call on all sides to refrain from violence. Now is the time for dialogue, not confrontation. It is the responsibility of leaders on all sides to take steps to reduce tensions. I call on the Egyptian authorities to respect the right of peaceful protest, to cease the use of violence against protestors, including live fire, and to hold to account those responsible.
“I also call on the Egyptian authorities to release political leaders detained following the events of 3 July, or charge them in accordance with the law. Such charges must be free from any suspicion that they are politically motivated.
“In our view, Egypt needs a political process that includes all groups on an equal footing leading to early and fair elections which all parties are able to contest.”