ElBaradei calls for peaceful power transfer in Egypt to avoid Tunisian scenario

The Egyptian regime should allow a peaceful transition of power to avoid a repetition of the Tunisian scenario in Egypt, said Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the National Association for Change (NAC) and potential candidate in the 2011 presidential election.

In a message on Twitter, ElBaradei said the violence in Tunisia is a response to suppression.

He said the Egyptian regime must understand that peaceful change is the only way to avoid painful repercussions.

News reports said Egyptian authorities have taken precautionary measures to preempt repercussions such as those currently sweeping a number of Arab countries.

President Hosni Mubarak held a closed-door meeting with the National Defense Council (NDC) on Saturday, Qatar-based satellite television network Al Jazeera reported. According to Al Jazeera, the NDC has decided on a number of “precautionary measures to avoid provoking citizens in the coming period,” including the postponement of any planned “price hikes or new taxes."

Egypt's constitution stipulates the NDC as the president's principal advisory body for all matters relating to national security. The council is comprised of the president, the ministers of defense, interior and foreign affairs, the director of general intelligence, and a number of other top officials.

Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit, meanwhile, ruled out the possibility of Tunisian-style revolutions in other Arab countries.  He said fears of the uprising spreading were "nonsense".

"Those who have such illusions and attempt to add fuel to the flames will not achieve their objectives and will themselves be harmed."

He added that some satellite channels seek to increase tensions in Arabic countries–such channels being either Western channels or those serving Western interests.

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