‘To succeed, Egyptians must stay in the streets’

With three killed and more than 1,000 injured in street clashes with police near the Israeli Embassy in Cairo, the Egyptian government has promised to keep embassies in the country safe. But journalist Mohamed Abdelfattah believes it will be hard.

­“I hope they can deliver on their pledge. But we have to understand why hundreds of thousands of angry Egyptians gathered last night outside the embassy. There is a lot of anger at what Israel did recently. They basically crossed the border from Israel into Egypt, killed a number of Egyptian soldiers, promised an investigation and nothing has yet been delivered,” he explained.

Demonstrators in front of the Israeli Embassy were demanding that the Egyptian government expel the Israeli ambassador from Egypt. This is not the first time Israeli troops have killed people or soldiers in the border area. 

“The Egyptian government has not responded to the will of demonstrators. They have not been serious enough to respond,” added Abdelfattah.

The US defense secretary Leon Panetta called the leader of the interim military government in Cairo as soon as the unrest broke out and told him to step up the protection of the Israeli Embassy. According to Abdelfattah, the US reaction to what happened in front of the Israeli Embassy was much quicker than the reaction to what happened to their embassy in Syria.

“I would just like to see the US being a fair player in the region, not just supporting Israel at the expense of other parties,” he maintained.

As Abdelfattah told RT, the Military Council which is in power in Egypt today has been promising to hold parliamentary elections in late November, but it is the Egyptian people that have to take everything into their own hands.

“After that they promised to hold presidential elections and finish the transfer of power. But these promises have been very vague. There is no tight schedule for any of them and there has been much doubt they are actually going to do that at all. The only guarantee for us to make sure the promises are delivered is to stay in the streets. As long as there are people in the streets pressing the Military Council to leave power, we will succeed,” he concluded.