Egypt's Pro-Democracy Alliance Condemns Sinai Tourist Bus Attack

Sunday, February 16, 2014

By Hussein Qabani

A senior member of the pro-democracy National Alliance for the Defense of Legitimacy dismissed as "catastrophic" the Sunday tourist bus blast in the Sinai resort city of Taba.

"The national alliance always rejects these catastrophic attacks," Emam Youssef, a senior member of the Salafist Asala Party, one of the parties making up the alliance, told Anadolu Agency.

"This is the result of the authorities' preoccupation with fighting their political rivals," he said.

A tourist bus blast on Sunday killed three Korean tourists and the Egyptian driver.

The blast is the first to target the tourist industry, a main foreign currency generator for Egypt, which has been suffering political uncertainty since the army's July 3 ouster of elected president Mohamed Morsi.

"The attack will tarnish Egypt's reputation abroad and undermine tourism industry," Youssef said.

Tourists were last targeted in Egypt in 2009 when a bomb went off in a tourist market in al-Hussein district in the heart of Fatimid Cairo.

The attacked killed a female French tourist and injured 25 other tourists of different nationalities.

Youssef blamed the bus attack on "coup leaders who claim to be fighting terrorism while, instead, they continue to detain girls, politicians and students."

Pro-democracy supporters describe the army's deposal of Morsi as a "military coup."

A senior leader of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party has earlier denounced the bus blast.

"This is a terrorist attack that can bring no good to Egypt," Amr Darrag, who served as minister under ousted president Mohamed Morsi, told AA on the phone from outside Egypt.

"The party totally condemns this attack," he asserted.

The authorities have launched an all-out crackdown on Morsi's supporters and the members of his party since his ouster.

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