Military warns against attacks on troops during Friday protest

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) on Wednesday warned against any attacks on its troops during the mass protest in Tahrir Square planned for Friday.

On its official page on social networking site Facebook, the SCAF published a statement in which it said “any transgression against the armed forces’ units, camps or vital Egyptian institutions is a threat to Egyptian national security.”

The statement went on to say that any violation would be "dealt with with the utmost severity and firmness and the perpetrators will be held accountable."

It added that the calls attributed to some movements “to attack armed forces units and the Interior Ministry” were an attempt “to question the patriotism of these forces.”

The statement, however, did not mention which movements were supposed to have made such calls.

The statement warned of what it described as “subversive elements” which “may take actions that would harm the image of Egypt and the revolutionary youth in front of the world, in order to achieve the objectives of the internal elements attempting to abort the revolution, or external elements targeting Egypt’s national security.”

The military council also announced on Wednesday that the movements that called for the mass protest would be responsible for organizing and securing the protest areas.

The SCAF added that “the right to hold peaceful demonstrations to express legitimate demands is guaranteed to all citizens of this great nation.”

Secular and liberal groups have called for a mass protest under the slogan "Correcting the Path" to pressure the ruling military council to halt military trials for civilians and announce a timetable for a power transfer. They are also demanding a change to the elections law, the setting of minimum and maximum wages, and firm action against thuggery.

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