6 Ministers Quit as Morsi Rejects Army Ultimatum

On shaky ground, he opts to stick with 'comprehensive national reconciliation'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jul 2, 2013 6:24 AM CDT
Opponents of Egypt's Islamist President Mohammed Morsi protest outside the presidential palace, in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, July 1, 2013.   (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
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(Newser) – Mohamed Morsi says he wasn't informed in advance of yesterday's military ultimatum, that it "may cause confusion in the complex national scene," and he's not going to accept it anyway. The army said it would step in if the crisis wasn't settled within 48 hours, but Morsi says that "the presidency is going on in its pre-planned path to hold a comprehensive national reconciliation," the BBC reports. But he's already on shaky footing, with five ministers resigning yesterday in "solidarity with the people's demand to overthrow the regime"; today, it emerged that the foreign minister has submitted his resignation as well.

Responding to concerns that the army's ultimatum could amount to a coup, the army posted on Facebook that it "does not aspire to rule and will not overstep its prescribed role." Meanwhile, violence has been reported between pro- and anti-Morsi protesters. President Obama called Morsi to prod him to heed protesters and reach a political resolution, the White House says. A BBC correspondent sees little chance Morsi can hang onto power.

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