Egypt’s interim President Adly Mansour declared a month-long state of emergency Wednesday, putting the stamp on what the Obama administration has refused to call a military coup. Mansour “has tasked the armed forces, in cooperation with the police, to take all necessary measures to maintain security and order and to protect public and private property and the lives of citizen,” according to a statement from his office.
So far Wednesday, the police have “maintained security and order” by killing hundreds of people and wounding thousands other. Official estimates of the death toll keep rising and now are at approximately 100, but reports from independent journalists indicate the number is far higher.
A government official praised the security forces for “exercising self-control and high-level professionalism in dispersing the sit-ins” and blamed the Muslim Brotherhood for the “escalation and violence.” The Muslim Brotherhood urged Egyptians to take to the streets across the country to “stop a massacre.”
Al Jazeera‘s Rawya Rageh reported from Cairo, “This battle is much bigger than what you’re seeing…[in] the casualties. This is a fight for the future of the country, and something that will determine the course of the Egyptian revolution that has been going on for two years now.”