Egypt approaching civil war: Putin
MOSCOW /LONDON - Agence France-Presse
AP PhotoRussian President Vladimir Putin warned on Sunday that the standoff in Egypt between supporters and foes of deposed President Mohamed Morsi threatened to degenerate into a civil war.
“Syria is already in the grips of a civil war, unfortunately enough, and Egypt is moving in that direction,” Russian news agencies quoted Putin as saying while on a visit to Kazakhstan.
“We would like to see the Egyptian people avoid this fate,” he said.
The Russian foreign ministry has previously called on all sides in the political crisis to exercise “restraint.”
Army had no choice: Blair
Meanwhile, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Egypt’s army had no choice but to overthrow Morsi.
Writing in the Observer newspaper, Blair, who acts as Middle East envoy for the United States, Russia, the EU and the UN, said the army’s only alternative would have been to let Egypt descend into chaos.
“The events that led to the Egyptian army’s removal of President Mohamed Morsi confronted the military with a simple choice: intervention or chaos,” wrote Blair, who led Britain for a decade from 1997.
Blair said the West had strong incentives to support Egypt’s democratic transition.
“At its crudest, we can’t afford for Egypt to collapse. So we should engage with the new de facto power,” he wrote.
“In that way, we can also help shape a path back to the ballot box that is designed by and for Egyptians.” Likewise, Blair argued that Western nations have a responsibility to work towards peace in the wider Middle East.
“We feel it should be someone else’s job to help sort it out. But it is our job,” he wrote.