Qurqur slams Ashton’s visit to Egypt, activists brand it a “bad omen”
Magdy Qarqar - REUTERS/Louafi Larbi

CAIRO: Magdy Qurqur slammed Catherine Ashton for not meeting with representatives from the Muslim Brotherhood or the National Alliance to Support Legitimacy (NASL) during her latest visit to Cairo on April 10.

“Her visit to Egypt confirms her stance and the European countries’ stance in supporting the military coup,” Qurqur, the Secretary General of the NASL, told The Cairo Post.

The European Union Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton came to Egypt for a one day visit on Thursday to discuss bilateral relations, and the situation in Egypt with regards to the imminent presidential elections slated for May 26-27 .

“Ashton supports the coup, and she was pressuring the alliance to accept the roadmap, which means delivering authority to the coup,” Qurqur continued.

Qurqur stated that Ashton’s supports for the “coup” was evidenced by her meeting with the interim president, the Prime Minister, the Foreign Minister and the presidential candidate Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, the former Defense Minister.

With regards to their perceived abrupt change in stance towards Ashton and the European Union, Qurqur stated that “at the beginning matters were not clear; therefore some expected positive reactions from the west, but time proved the west’s alignment to the roadmap and Sisi.”

“The coalition does not depend on America or Europe, but on the people,” he continued.

In the same vein, a movement called “Egyptians Worldwide for Democracy and Justice in Europe,” based in Switzerland, criticized Ashton for not meeting with any of Muslim Brotherhood’s representatives in Egypt during her visit.

The movement asked, in a statement published on its Facebook page on Thursday, “Is Ashton part of the solution or part of the problem regarding the Egyptian crisis?”

The movement stated that Ashton’s visit to Egypt prior to the dispersal of the MB sit-ins in Rabaa al-Adaweya and Nahda Squares resulted in nothing but “more bloodshed.”

The movement referred to her visit as a “bad omen,” foreseeing more violations against the Brotherhood.

Further, the movement called upon its members across the European countries to demand the dismissal of Ashton from her post, accusing her of reneging on protecting freedoms and human rights.

Catherine Ashton had visited Egypt twice in the last year. The first visit was on July 17, 2013, when she met with interim President and the former Defense Minister Abdel Fatah al-Sisi to discuss Egypt’s situation after the removal of the former president Mohamed Morsi on July 3.

The second visit was on Dec. 26, 2013, when she came to Egypt on a three day vacation, accompanied by her family in Luxor.

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