SCAF Defends Its Response as Crackdown Continues

December 19, 2011 . By

On day four of the unfolding clashes between Egyptian security forces and protesters, the death toll increased to 13, and 164 protestors have been detained. Footage of security forces relying heavily on the use of batons and teargas against protesters has caused reactions from the international community. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon “condemned the ‘excessive’ force used against the [demonstrators],” and Amnesty International made a plea to “arms suppliers to stop sending small arms and ammunition to Egypt’s military and security forces.”

General Adel Emara, a member of the governing Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, defended the state’s response to the protests: “The armed forces and the police pledged not to use violence against protesters actively or even verbally.” Emara blamed protesters for sparking the episodes of violence, stating that they had “deliberately provoked soldiers into clashes as part of a plot to ‘to destroy the state.’”