Egypt army calls for unity talks as protests held in Cairo
CAIRO (AFP) - Egypt's powerful army called for President Mohamed Mursi and the secular opposition to meet to resolve a deepening crisis over a constitutional referendum as the rival camps organised mass protests on Tuesday.
General Abdel Fattah al-Sissi, the country's armed forces chief and defence minister, made the appeal "for the sake of Egypt" to all political groups and movements to meet on Wednesday at a Cairo military sports complex, according to a statement posted on the military's official Facebook page.
It came as tens of thousands of protesters filled Cairo streets to demonstrate for and against the referendum called for Saturday on a draft constitution backed by Dr Mursi and his Islamist allies.
Despite fears the rival rallies could mix, sparking clashes like those seen outside the presidential palace last week when seven people were killed, there were no immediate reports of any violence at Tuesday's demonstrations.