Egypt's president urges Syrian regime to go

Associated Press
Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi waves to photographers as he leaves the Arab League headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012. Morsi says Syrian leader Bashar Assad must learn from "recent history" and step down before it is too late. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)
.

View gallery

CAIRO (AP) — Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi gave his first major foreign policy speech on Wednesday, calling on Syrian President Bashar Assad's regime to step down and warning Iran against interfering in Arab affairs.

He also voiced support for Palestinian efforts to gain full membership status at the United Nations.

Addressing an Arab foreign ministers' meeting in Cairo, the Islamist leader outlined the foreign policy objectives of his administration, more than two months after he took office as the nation's first freely elected and civilian president.

His comments signaled an attempt to reassert Egyptian leadership in the Middle East. Many Egyptians say the country's role was diminished role under Morsi's predecessor, ousted authoritarian President Hosni Mubarak, and that this allowed non-Arab powers such as Turkey and Iran to gain influence in the region.

In lambasting Iran, Morsi has placed Egypt firmly in the camp of Gulf Arab nations led by Saudi Arabia, which see Shiite and Persian Iran to be meddling in their affairs and a threat to their security. The United Arab Emirates, for example, accuses Iran of illegally occupying three islands it claims as its own. Bahrain says Iran is encouraging the Shiite majority in the tiny island nation to rise up against the ruling Sunni minority family for more rights.

Mubarak was overthrown in early 2011 in a popular uprising. After 17 months of military rule, Morsi defeated Mubarak's last prime minister in a presidential election and took office in June.

Morsi, who hails from the Islamic fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood group, has chosen foreign policy as the forum to make his first mark as president. He started off in Iran last month with a surprisingly hard-hitting speech during a summit of the Nonaligned Movement. He voiced his support for Syrian rebels against Assad's "oppressive" regime.

Those comments took on added significance because they were made in Iran, Assad's closest ally and his main foreign backer.

Morsi continued in the same vein on Wednesday.

"I tell the Syrian regime that there is still a chance to halt the bloodshed," he said. "Don't listen to the voices that tempt you to stay because you will not be there for much longer. There is no room for further delaying a decision that will stop the bloodshed," he added.

"It's too late to talk about reform. This is the time for change. The Syrian regime must learn from recent history," he said. He was alluding to the fate of authoritarian regimes in Tunisia, Libya, Egypt and Yemen that have been overthrown by Arab Spring uprisings.

The Syrian conflict began nearly 18 months ago with mostly peaceful protests demanding the ouster of Assad, who succeeded his father, Hafez Assad, in 2000. The uprising morphed into a civil war as the opposition took up arms in response to the regime's use of heavy military force to quell the protests.

At least 23,000 people have been killed since the uprising began in March 2011, according to anti-regime activists.

"Everyone must realize that the Syrian people have made their decision and that decision must be implemented through change," said Morsi.

Without mentioning Iran by name, Morsi said there can never be any cooperation between the Arab world and neighboring nations except on the basis of "a clear and candid declaration of respect for the sovereignty of Arab nations and non-interference in their affairs."

On the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, Morsi said Israel was not making serious efforts to reach a settlement.

"We need to provide our Palestinian brothers with the necessary support to reach a just settlement," he said. Morsi also labeled as a "fair demand" the Palestinian diplomatic drive to win full membership status at the United Nations.

Israel, which Morsi did not mention by name, is opposed to those Palestinian efforts, arguing that such a move would hinder negotiations to reach a settlement.

Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.

    Recommended for You

    • Boeing responds after Trump knocks contract for Air Force One jets

      Donald Trump declared Tuesday morning that the Air Force should cancel its contract with Boeing to build two new presidential airplanes, asserting that the agreement had a $4 billion price tag. “Boeing is building a brand new 747 Air Force One for future presidents, but costs are out of control, more than $4 billion. It’s not clear how Trump, who frequently tweets exaggerated or baseless claims, arrived at that number.

      Yahoo News
    • If you’re thinking about buying an Apple Watch, today is the day to do it

      The Apple Watch might not be the smash hit that Wall Street analysts guessed it would be, but it's still the most popular smart watch in the world by a landslide. In fact, during its first year on the market, the Apple Watch became the number 2 best-selling watch brand on the planet behind only Rolex. That's a pretty amazing feat for a device in such a new category, and now is your chance to see what all the fuss is about. Amazon has a big sale going for one day only, and it knocks $80 off a stainless steel 38mm Apple Watch with a Sport band, or $90 off a stainless steel 42mm Apple Watch with a Classic Buckle leather band. These prices are unbeatable, and they're only available on Tuesday. We're talking about the Series 1 watches here, just to be clear. If you want a taste of the stainless Apple Watch without spending too much cash though, this is the perfect way to get it. The only difference between Series 1 and Series 2 Apple Watches is the speed, and it's really not too big a deal for a device where all of your interactions are only supposed to last for a few seconds. The most important new Apple Watch feature this year is water-resistance, and these Series 1 Apple Watches are both water-resistant. Also, note that the smaller 38mm model is refurbished. The larger 42mm Apple Watch Series 1 is brand new. Here are the models on sale on Amazon today: Apple Watch 38mm Stainless Steel Case w/ Black Sport Band This Certified Refurbished product has been tested and certified to work and look like new, with minimal to no signs of wear, by a specialized third-party seller approved by Amazon. The product is backed by a minimum 90-day warranty, and may arrive in a generic brown or white box. Accessories may be generic and not directly from the manufacturer. Operating System: watchOS 2, Chipset: Apple S1, Processor: 520 MHz, GPU: PowerVR SGX543 Internal Memory: 8GB, 512MB RAM Up to 18 Hours of All-Day Battery Life, Up to 3 hours Talk Time; About 1.5 hours to 80% Charge Time, About 2.5 hours to 100% Charge Time IPX7 Ceritified - Water Resistant up to 1 meter and 30 minutes Apple Watch 42mm Stainless Steel Case w/ Black Classic Buckle 1.65-inch AMOLED Capacitive Touchscreen, 390 x 312 pixels + Sapphire Crystal Glass Operating System: watchOS 2, Chipset: Apple S1, Processor: 520 MHz, GPU: PowerVR SGX543 Internal Memory: 8GB, 512MB RAM Heart Rate Sensor, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Ambient Light Sensor Up to 18 Hours of All-Day Battery Life, Up to 3 hours Talk Time; About 1.5 hours to 80% Charge Time, About 2.5 hours to 100% Charge Time

      BGR News
    • No bail for 15-year-old charged with decapitating classmate

      LAWRENCE, Mass. (AP) — A 15-year-old boy charged with killing a high school classmate whose headless body was found near a river said in a police report made public Monday that they had gone to smoke marijuana together and he had last seen the classmate alive.

      Associated Press
    • Get ready for a limited NES Classic Edition sale tomorrow morning

      It's basically impossible to find a NES Classic Edition for $60 right now, unless you or someone you've recently bribed works in inventory management at Target. Walmart, Best Buy and anyone else you'd think of as selling the games console are out of stock online, and the limited stock that trickles into physical retails stores is being gobbled up before they even make it to the shelves. But at the eleventh hour before Christmas, one highly unlikely retailer might save your day/holiday gifting plans: Urban Outfitters. DON'T MISS:  Galaxy Note 7 fires were caused by over-ambitious design, engineers find The store known for selling painfully hipster record players and "ironic" Polaroids will have a limited-stock, online-only sale of the NES Classic Edition starting tomorrow morning. We don't yet have a precise time, but Urban Outfitters told  BGR  it will be sometime Tuesday AM. If I were a guessing man, I'd say the likeliest times would be 12:01AM, and something like 7, 8 or 9AM in the morning, just as physical stores open/the IT guy clicks "go" in an office somewhere. In the absence of perfect information, I'd recommend using a service like Visualping  to keep an eye on Urban Outfitter's tech page , so that when the site gets updated with a new product, you'll get pinged with an email. The good thing about this Urban Outfitter sale is that unlike the stock releases from Walmart and Target, not too many people seem to know about it. Add that to the uncertain release timing, and this could be your best chance to get a console before Christmas. Years of experience with buying concert tickets has taught me the best strategies for making sure you get your hands on a console. Make sure you set up an account beforehand and that you're logged in, to speed through checkout. You'll also want to have more than one computer on hand, so you can keep hitting refresh on multiple devices to get the best chance. If possible, rope a couple friends into the plan; bribe with the promise of Super Mario parties where necessary.

      BGR News
    • 75th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack (28 photos)

      On the morning of Dec. 7, 1941, a Sunday, Japanese bombers flew across Oahu, Hawaii, and began their assault. The attack killed more than 2,300 people, nearly half of them on the battleship USS Arizona. More than 1,100 were injured. After the attack, President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered a speech before Congress, calling Dec. 7 a “date which will live in infamy.” The U.S. declared war against Japan. (AP) Dec. 7, 2016, marks the 75th anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Here’s a look back at that fateful day. See more news-related photo galleries and follow us on Yahoo News Photo Tumblr .  

      Yahoo News Photo Staff
    • Boy, 16, Charged After Remains of Teen Missing for 3 Weeks Found Along Alaska Roadside

      Remains believed to be those of David Grunwald were found Friday near the town of Palmer.

      Inside Edition
    • Sherri Papini, Family Move To Undisclosed Location

      An investigation is ongoing into the kidnapping of the California mother who was found heavily battered on Thanksgiving Day morning.

      International Business Times
    • Longtime Sheriff's Deputy Dies After Her Car Plunges into Sinkhole: 'We Are Heartbroken'

      Deputy Dora Linda Nishihara, 69, died after her car fell into 12 feet of water Sunday.

      Inside Edition
    • 2018 Buick Regal Sedan and Wagon Spied: They're Undisguised and They're Hot

      Swap out the Insignia insignias, and you have sharp-looking Buicks.

      Car and Driver
    • Al Gore: I just had an ‘extremely interesting conversation’ about climate change with Donald Trump

      Former Vice President Al Gore had a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump and his daughter, Ivanka Trump, on Monday. The meeting was announced by Trump spokesman Jason Miller during the presidential transition team’s daily conference call. Miller said Gore would be discussing “climate issues” with Ivanka, but that he was not scheduled to speak with Trump.

      Yahoo News
    • Let's Get Ready to Roo-ble! Kangaroo Gripping Dog in Chokehold Is Punched in the Face by Hunter

      Surprisingly, the entire event came to be as a final wish to a terminal teen suffering from a rare form of bone cancer.

      Inside Edition
    • Chief defends police investigation in decapitated teen case

      LAWRENCE, Mass. (AP) — A police chief is defending his department's investigation into the disappearance of a 16-year-old boy whose headless body was found near a river.

      Associated Press
    • For $56,000, You Can Have a Hellcat-Powered Wrangler

      On top of the purchase price of the vehicle.

      The Drive
    • Islamic State shifts defenses to east Mosul: coalition commander

      By Patrick Markey ERBIL, Iraq (Reuters) - Islamic State has brought its forward defenses from western Mosul towards the east as it fights against Iraqi forces in the battle to liberate the city, a coalition commanding general said. Iraqi special forces are slowly edging through districts in eastern Mosul, Islamic State's last stronghold in Iraq, where they face suicide attacks, snipers and mortars from militants dug in among the civilian population. Commanders expected the western half of the city, divided by the Tigris River, to be the tougher battle, but Islamic State - which has controlled the city for two years - appears to be committing its defenses to the east against the Iraqi forces, which are backed by Western-led coalition air strikes.

      Reuters
    • Republican success opens door to amending US Constitution

      JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The November election put Republicans in full control of a record number of state legislatures around the country, a level of power that gives the party an unprecedented opportunity: change the U.S. Constitution.

      Associated Press
    • Fatal warehouse fire in Oakland (49 photos)

      The death toll from the Oakland, California, warehouse fire has now climbed to 36 as authorities continue to discover bodies — some of them of teens possibly younger than 17 — after a blaze broke out during a dance party in a building that housed artist studios. The Oakland Fire Department has searched 70 percent of the charred building so far but had to stop this morning because of unsafe conditions, Fire Chief Teresa Deloach Reed told " Good Morning America " today. It planned to resume the search for victims later today. "The unfortunate reality of this somber Monday morning is that we're anticipating additional bodies being recovered within the structure," she said. "We're at approximately 70 percent of coverage in terms of the area that we're able to search, and the 30 percent that's left is 12 to 15 feet high with debris." At total of 33 bodies had been found at that point, but the number has since risen by three. Of the 36 victims, 11 have been positively identified, authorities said this morning. The Oakland Fire Department first responded to reports of a structure fire at the warehouse known as the Ghost Ship around 11:32 p.m. Friday night. Reed told reporters the facility appeared to function as a residential building that hosted a makeshift artists' studio as well as parties like the one that took place Friday night. (GMA) See more news-related photo galleries and follow us on Yahoo News Photo Tumblr.

      Yahoo News Photo Staff
    • See Pics Of ‘Duck Dynasty’ Rebecca Lo Robertson’s Wedding To Fiancé John Reed Loflin

      “Duck Dynasty” Rebecca Lo Robertson just got married to her fiancé John Reed Loflin. See wedding photos here.

      International Business Times
    • Car and Driver
    • Trump says new Air Force One too costly: 'Cancel order!'

      Converting a pair of 747-8 jumbo jets to state-of-the-art luxury command centers by 2024 had been estimated to cost $3 billion when Boeing was picked for the job in January 2015, but since then costs have apparently been rising. "Boeing is building a brand new 747 Air Force One for future presidents, but costs are out of control, more than $4 billion. Cancel order!" Trump tweeted.

      AFP 29 min ago
    • BMW remotely locks car thief in stolen vehicle until cops arrive

      Modern luxury cars are packed with all sorts of advanced security features, but not even a company like BMW can protect against someone leaving their keys inside their brand new sedan. But one would-be car thief found that even such colossal absentmindedness doesn't mean a sure-fire score. Seattle police released a report detailing the recent car theft. Apparently a BMW 550i driver borrowed the vehicle from a friend, and proceeded to leave the car unlocked in a parking garage with a set of keys right inside. A group of miscreants were browsing for possible scores when they stumbled upon the gift-wrapped BMW and one of the men decided to make it his own. DON'T MISS:  Amazon just announced Amazon Go, a grocery store with no checkout Once the friend — who was undoubtedly sweating bullets after realizing that they handed their friend's pricey ride over to some thieves — contacted police, things started to get interesting. The cops proceeded to call BMW, which was able to track the vehicle and pinpoint its location, which they relayed to the officers. Seattle police were also lucky that the stolen BMW also had remote door locks that could be activated from afar, which the company was happy to put to work. A short while later, the police found the BMW still running with the thief sleeping inside. The man then attempted to make an escape, but failed, and was quickly brought into custody by the officers. He was discovered to have a bit of meth on him as well, which, along with a heavy auto theft charge, will likely keep him busy for the foreseeable future.

      BGR News