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Statement by the Tánaiste on developments in Egypt

Security, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore, Press Releases, Middle East and North Africa, 2013

The events in Egypt overnight, which saw the removal of President Morsi and his government following military intervention and the suspension of the Egyptian constitution, are a matter of deep concern.

No one who truly holds to democratic values can view with equanimity what was, to all intents and purposes, a military take over.

The Irish Ambassador and our Embassy in Cairo are keeping me closely informed of developing events.  They are also keeping in close contact with all Irish citizens in Egypt who have registered with the Embassy.  So far, we have had no reports of any Irish citizens being caught up in the protests.  Any Irish citizens in Egypt who have not yet registered their contacts details with the Embassy should do so.

At this stage, in view of the serious events overnight and in recent days, my Department has recommended against all non-essential travel to Egypt, with the exception of travel to the Red Sea resorts.   Intending travelers or those already in the area should closely monitor the Department’s website for any further information or advice.

It is imperative that all parties and institutions in Egypt should initiate without delay a fully inclusive process of political dialogue aimed at bringing about the swiftest possible restoration of civilian-led government following free and fair elections.  All sides must also demonstrate restraint at this critical juncture and avoid any further recourse to violence.

Egypt and its people are undoubtedly experiencing a difficult transition to democracy. But fundamentally what is required is that all groups in Egypt should sit down together and, through politics, seek to overcome their differences and promote the realization of those goals of inclusivity, dignity and betterment which are at the heart of the Tahrir revolution.

Ireland and our EU partners have made clear that we will continue to fully support the Egyptian people in their legitimate aspiration for democratic and inclusive government.