Russia urges Egypt to hold fair elections

By REUTERS
July 9, 2013 14:57

MOSCOW - Egypt should strive for a peaceful transition of power in fair elections, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday, underlining Moscow's concerns about the risk of more unrest after the ousting of President Mohammed Morsi.

Last week's military overthrow of Morsi has already triggered fighting between his supporters and opponents across Egypt, and raised fears members of his Muslim Brotherhood group could be driven into more radical organizations.

Russia, which sells grain to Egypt and is trying to build up its influence in the Middle East, is wary of political Islam as it struggles to quell an Islamist insurgency on its own soil.

"We support any efforts aimed at ending any manifestations of violence and confrontation, that are aimed at stabilizing the situation," Lavrov said when asked about Egypt at a news conference.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin said over the weekend he feared Egypt could drift into civil war.


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