Safety a concern amid Egyptian crisis

July 3, 2013 at 9:29 AM
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LONDON, July 3 (UPI) -- Foreign nationals still in Egypt need to consider whether or not their presence there is absolutely essential, the British government warned.

The Egyptian army gave President Mohamed Morsi a Wednesday afternoon deadline to respond to mass demonstrations warning it would take action on its own.

Frustration with Morsi's conservative policies and a lackluster economy has crippled an administration that has been in office for just over a year.

The British government said its travel warnings remained in place as the Wednesday deadline approached. The warning said any British nationals in the country "should consider whether they have a pressing need to remain."

The U.S. government issued a similar advisory last week as pressure on Morsi's government mounted.

Members of the European Parliament said Wednesday they were calling on all parties to the confrontation in Egypt to settle their differences peacefully.

Catherine Ashton, the top foreign policy official for the European Union, said she was watching the situation in Egypt unfold with deep concern.

"Confrontation cannot be a solution [to the crisis]," she said in a statement.

Morsi said this week he would not step down.

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