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Abbas congratulates Adly Mansour on Egyptian presidency

July 4, 2013 12:52 A.M. (Updated: July 6, 2013 10:09 A.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday congratulated Adly Mansour on taking office as Egypt's interim president following the overthrow of Mohammad Mursi.

"By the name of the Palestinian people, and its leadership I congratulate the Egyptian leadership in this transitional phase of its history," Abbas said, the official PA news site Wafa reported.

"We ask God to help you to take this difficult responsibility at this critical period, to achieve the hopes of the Egyptian people in freedom, dignity and stability," the president added.

Abbas praised the role of Egypt's army and its leader Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and said they had preserved security in Egypt. He also applauded the Egyptian people for their revolution.

Mansour was sworn in as interim president of Egypt on Thursday, a day after the military ousted Mohamed Mursi following a week of massive protests.

"I swear to preserve the system of the republic, and respect the constitution and law, and guard the people's interests," Mansour said as he took the oath of office at a ceremony in the Supreme Constitutional Court.

The swearing-in ceremony, which was broadcast live on national television, came after the military swept aside Mursi on Wednesday, a little more than a year after the Islamist leader took office.

A senior military officer told AFP the army was now "preventively" holding Mursi.

The ousted president's government unraveled after the army gave him a 48-hour ultimatum in the wake of massive demonstrations against him on June 30, the anniversary of his first turbulent year in power.

Hamas, the Islamist movement that rivals Abbas' Fatah party, said Wednesday it did not fear the fall of Mursi and that it was concerned only with the stability of Egypt.

"We do not fear the fall of President Mohamed Mursi," Hamas leader Ahmad Yousef told Ma'an. "We fear the dramatic changes that could cause things to go out of hand and lead to bloodshed."

"There is no doubt that the whole Arab world is waiting and hoping that the situation in Egypt stabilizes," he said.

"We only care about stability in Egypt regardless of who is in charge. Egypt is a lifeline to us; it’s a major factor in the stability of the internal Palestinian situation -- it is our backbone," Yousef added.

He hoped a political solution could be found for the crisis and lead Egypt to the "shore of safety."
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