UN Security Council calls for "maximum restraint" in Egypt
The UN Security Council on Thursday called on all parties in Egypt to "exercise maximum restraint" and put an end to violence in the Middle East country after 500 people were killed in clashes between security forces and protesters seeking the reinstatement of deposed President Mohamed Morsi.
The Argentine permanent representative to the United Nations, Maria Cristina Perceval, who holds the rotating council presidency for August, made the remarks as she was speaking to the press here at the end of a closed-door council meeting on the current situation in Egypt.
"The view of council members is that it is important to end violence in Egypt, that the parties exercise maximum restraint," she said.
The closed council meeting, held at a joint request from council members France, Britain and Australia, began at around 5: 35 p.m. EDT (2135 GMT), was briefed by UN Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson.
Earlier on Thursday, Eliasson, who just emerged from the closed council meeting, told reporters that "the position of the UN has been well expressed in the secretary-general's statement of yesterday. And I was building my briefing on that."
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who is on a visit to the Middle East, has strongly condemned the violence arising from the operations, and called upon all parties in Egypt to reconsider their actions in light of the new political realities in order to save the country from further disaster.
Earlier on Thursday, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged the Security Council to convene quickly on Egypt.
The Egyptian security forces moved on Wednesday to clear two camps in Cairo, the Egyptian capital, which were occupied by supporters of Morsi demanding his return to power, resulting in deadly clashes, with at least 525 deaths and 3,717 injuries reported by the Egyptian Health Ministry.
Hours after the raids on the camps in Cairo, Egypt's interim government declared a state of emergency nationwide for one month, imposing a curfew on Cairo and 10 provinces and allowing security forces to arrest and detain civilians indefinitely without charges.
Morsi was ousted by popular-backed military procedures in early July and he has been detained ever since.
United Nations (Xinhua)