By Jacob Lippincott
Nations and international organisations were quick to condemn the spate of attacks that ripped through Cairo on 24 January, the eve of the third anniversary of the 25 January Revolution.
The four bombings targeted Egyptian security forces, beginning with a car bomb attack on a police headquarters in the early morning and ending with an explosion targeting a police convoy in the late afternoon. The bombings caused panic throughout the Egyptian capital and coincided with clashes between supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi and police forces.
Sinai-based militant group Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis claimed responsibility for the attacks, and stated that there would be more to come. The militant group has been embroiled in a bloody conflict with Egyptian security forces in Sinai and elsewhere.
Arab League Secretary General Nabil El-Araby released a statement condemning the attack and stressed the need for enforcing the “maximum penalty on all those involved in this heinous crime, whether perpetrators or planners or instigators”. El-Araby also stated that the league “supported Egypt in its fight against terrorism” and that the attacks would “not impede the march of the Egyptian people toward a democratic system in which everyone lives in freedom.”
Western governments and organisations also issued statements strongly condemning the attacks while stressing the importance of compromise and restraint.
EU High Representative Catherine Ashton expressed the futility of violence in achieving the aims of the Egyptian people.
“The road towards democracy will no doubt remain difficult, but violence will not bring Egypt any closer to the people’s desire for a democratic country where all Egyptians enjoy respect and fundamental human rights,” she said. “All the people of Egypt must now stand together and, in a spirit of compromise, build a deep and sustainable democracy.”
Deputy US State Department Spokesperson Marie Harf released a short statement strongly condemning the terrorist attacks, extending condolences to the victims.
“We continue to support the people of Egypt and urge them to move forward peacefully with the transition, respecting the rights of all Egyptians… We continue to support the people of Egypt and urge them to move forward peacefully with the transition, respecting the rights of all Egyptians,” Harf said.
This was echoed by the British Minister for the Middle East and North Africa, Hugh Robertson: “I condemn the terrorist attacks in Cairo this morning, in which a number of people have been killed and many more injured. My thoughts are with the families of those affected. I call on all Egyptians to resolve their differences peacefully and to refrain from violence.”