CAIRO - Egypt's feuding politicians finally met on Thursday,
summoned by the country's most influential Islamic scholar who made them call an
end to violence after a week of the deadliest protests since President Mohamed
Morsi took office.
The meeting, called by the head of the
thousand-year-old al-Azhar university and mosque, was attended both by top
officials of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood and secularist foes who had previously
rebuffed the Islamist president's calls for talks.
Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb
told the politicians that a national dialogue, "in which all elements of
Egyptian society participate, without any exclusion, is the only tool to resolve
any problems or differences".
"Political work has nothing to do with
violence or sabotage and the welfare of everyone and the fate of our nation
depends on respect for the rule of law," the sheikh said.