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Three years after revolution there is little to celebrate in Egypt

Published time: January 26, 2014 04:44

Supporters of Egypt's army and police gather at Tahrir square in Cairo, on the third anniversary of Egypt's uprising, January 25, 2014 (Reuters/Mohamed Abd El Ghany)

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Both the Egyptian interim government and the Muslim Brotherhood have themselves to blame for the poor security situation in the country, Egyptian journalist Mohammad Sabry told RT.

RT: Three years after the revolution, what is there to celebrate?

Mohammad Sabry: Well I said my opinion a couple of days ago in one of my articles, and I said Egypt has very little to celebrate on this day. In fact, we have a lot of dead people to mourn. We have a lot of explosions that rocked the city yesterday and this basically should cancel any form of celebration that was intended before that. Yesterday was an unprecedented day in the history of militancy in Egypt. Even through the 1990’s, no single city was hit by four bomb operations on one day, let alone the fact that the capital security department was targeted yesterday and was followed by three more bombings in different parts of the city. The day before, we had five officers killed in upper Egypt’s Beni Suef and this morning we woke up to the news of a military chopper targeted in North Sinai. There is absolutely nothing to celebrate; the country is more polarized than ever, we can see the signs of hostility and divisions.

RT:Indeed, we see a lot of violence and unrest on the streets of Egypt and the situation is volatile there, as you just mentioned. There doesn’t seem to be much unity among people - but just how deep are those divisions that you started mentioning, between those who support the army and those who do not?

MS: So far those divisions could be contained but what’s happening is we have a major ground for the pro-regime media inciting violence against anyone who is not endorsing the current regime. We have a whole population who is hearing this incitement every day. We have the Muslim Brotherhood who are definitely guilty of a lot of things - the things they’ve done or not have done during their year in power. But that does not give anyone the right to incite violence and civil strife.

RT: The Muslim Brotherhood denies responsibility for the violence, so why does the public blame them for all these activities?

MS: In fact the Muslim Brotherhood has never publicly and straightforwardly denied its responsibility for violence. In fact the Muslim Brotherhood has been caught on several cameras attacking opposition protesters. There have been several cases of detaining the opposition and shutting down media houses during their time [in power]. Of course it’s not as bad as the violence we’ve been seeing since the ouster of Mohammed Morsi, but the Muslim Brotherhood’s approach is also not making them look very innocent. They keep talking about conspiracy theories. They keep blaming the government for staging those bombings in its departments, which is absolutely nonsense. But at the same time, the opposite side - which is the regime - and the regime loyalists and the pro-regime media or protesters are not peaceful themselves and are as hostile as the Muslim Brotherhood is. Legally we have to approach those explosions, those militant attacks, through evidence, through criminal investigations, which is the only thing we lack now. The Muslim Brotherhood is being blamed without evidence and without judicial movement into those cases.

RT: We know that at least five blasts have happened in Cairo in the past week amid what is said to be tight security. What does this actually all mean? Does it mean that security is not tight enough? And what can be done to tighten it, to make sure this violence does not happen?

MS: Apparently the current government is incompetent in dealing with the ongoing terrorism. We have seen warnings over the past six months and over the past three years in general and I don’t see any effective means of dealing with it. Of course, the military has done a great job in Sinai, but that’s a completely different story geographically, politically, and socially. But on the general level, if you have the security department of the capital bombed in broad daylight then that means a lot of things. It means that the government is somehow incapable of protecting itself in the way it should be protecting itself. And what should be stopped now and what the government should be working tirelessly to stop is inciting violence, moving the country forward towards a phase of civil strife.

RT: How realistic is that?

MS: The government is not doing any of it. I don’t see the government as facing those violators who gave themselves a right to attack other people. I don’t see the government giving us a clear text of what is happening. If you blame the Muslim Brotherhood for an attack, without any investigation, if the media frenzy is happening...we hear about unnamed security forces blaming the Muslim Brotherhood every other day. But so far we have not seen any legal documents giving evidence to who was behind these terrorist attacks.