Washington condemns unrest in Cairo

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IOL pic jan29 egypt morsi Associated Press The White House has urged Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi (pictured) to act after several days of violence in Suez and Port Said.

Washington - The White House on Monday condemned the unrest shaking Egypt's fragile peace and called on the country's leaders to make clear that violence is never acceptable.

“We strongly condemn the recent violence that has taken place in various Egyptian cities,” said White House spokesperson Jay Carney.

“We look to all Egyptians to express themselves peacefully and look to Egyptian leaders to make clear that violence is not acceptable.”

The US statement follows an outbreak of violence in Egypt in which nearly 50 people have died since Friday.

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi late on Sunday declared a month-long state of emergency in the provinces of Port Said, Suez and Ismailiya, where rioters have attacked and torched police stations.

In a televised address, he also slapped the three provinces with night-time curfews, while urging the opposition - which accuses him of betraying the revolution that brought him to power - to join a national dialogue.

Egypt's main opposition bloc on Monday rejected the invitation for talks and instead called for more mass demonstrations. - Sapa-AFP

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