The Egyptian opposition on Monday rejected talks with President Mohamed Morsy unless their demands are met on amending the constitution, creating a new government and ending the bloodshed.
Facing his worst crisis since taking office in July, Mr Morsy renewed his call for the opposition to engage in a national dialogue, after almost 50 people were killed in clashes since Friday.
Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei said: “Unless the president takes responsibility for the bloody events and pledges to form a national salvation government and a balanced committee to amend the constitution, any dialogue would be a waste of time.” Mr Morsy on Sunday declared a state of emergency and a night-time curfew for one month in the three restive cities of Port Said, Suez and Ismailia.
Thirty-eight people were killed in Port Said, nine in Suez and one in Ismailia, the government said.
After Mr Morsy’s speech, dozens defied the curfew and took to the streets in protest in Ismailia.
The protests started Friday as Egyptians marked the second anniversary of the revolt that toppled president Hosny Mubarak.
The Egyptian Popular Current political group, led by former presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabahy, said a serious dialogue requires real guarantees by presenting political solutions, not security measures.
“The Popular Current, which emphasizes that it is not against constructive national dialogue, refuses to engage in talks amid continuing bloodshed and the regime’s crimes against demonstrators,” the group said.