Anti-Morsi Protests Set Stage for Egypt Civil War

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- One year after Egyptians elected Mohammed Morsi, millions took to the streets to demand he leave office. The nationwide protests set the stage for a potential civil war.

"I am demanding that he [Morsi] step down from office and leave," anti-Morsi protestor Hatem al-Sayed said. "I am demanding the whole Muslim Brotherhood -- okay? -- to leave the country. We don't want them here."

Many Egyptians believe Morsi has put the agenda of the Muslim Brotherhood ahead of the country.

"He just wants the [Muslim] Brotherhood to rule Egypt," Sameh Sedkey, another protestor, said. "He doesn't look after the Egyptians at all. We don't need him, we do not want him; he should leave."

The anti-Morsi fervor brought together secular Egyptians, moderate Muslims, and Christians.

"You should understand that people are angry and there is no conspiracy," said opposition leader Amr Moussa, a member of the National Salvation Front. "This is the people of Egypt expressing the need, their desire … of change. We cannot spend another year similarly with the same ways of dealing with our problems."

Meanwhile, smaller groups of pro-Morsi demonstrators also took to the streets.

"The people hold the legitimacy and we support Dr. Mohammed Morsi and we would like to tell him not to be affected by the opponents' protests and not to give up his rights," Morsi supporter Ahmed Ramadan said. "We are here to support and protect him."

Morsi said he won't step down. His spokesman, Omar Amer, said he wants to talk with his opponents.

"The president has called for dialogue," Amer said. "The president has previously said that he is reaching out to everyone and that he is ready to listen to serious national dialogue."

Yet Morsi opponents say he has pushed through unpopular constitutional amendments, assumed unprecedented powers, and failed to address Egypt's sinking economy.

Magdi Kahlil from Coptic Solidarity told Christian World News that under Morsi, Christians have suffered increased persecution. He warned of a potential civil war.

"It's a matter of time that Egypt will go to civil war because the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists only believe in power and violence so they don't keep silent. They don't believe in peace demonstrations," Kahlil said.

Egypt's army is watching the country's growing divide and has implied they might intervene. In the meantime, Egypt's future seems to hang in the balance.

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CBN News
Chris Mitchell

Chris Mitchell

CBN News Middle East Bureau Chief

In a time where the world's attention is riveted on events in the Middle East, CBN viewers have come to appreciate Chris Mitchell's timely reports from this explosive region of the world. Mitchell brings a Biblical and prophetic perspective to these daily news events that shape our world.