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UN rights experts urge immediate end to violence in Egypt

A group of independent UN rights experts on Friday urged all parties involved in the Egyptian civil unrest to end the recent violence. The Coordination Committee [official website], composed of six experts appointed by the UN Human Rights Council [official website] to oversee human rights concerns, violations and procedures, expressed their concern [press release] regarding the escalating violence in the streets of Cairo, placing the death toll at 600 [press release] following continued clashes this week. Committee Chairman Chaloka Beyani stressed that peaceful demonstrations must not be met with violence, calling for a period of dialogue, reconciliation and inclusive political transition.

While Egypt has faced political unrest since the Egyptian Revolution [JURIST backgrounder] began in 2011, the country has been particularly volatile since the military deposed president Mohammed Morsi on July 3 and suspended the constitution. Chairman of the Supreme Constitutional Court Adly Mansour [BBC report] has been acting as interim head of state since Morsi's ouster. Earlier this month an Egyptian judge extended the Morsi's detention [JURIST report] by another 15 days in order to investigate claims that he conspired with Palestinian militants during the 2011 uprising. The announcement sparked further protests and demonstrations by pro-Morsi supporters. In July Egyptian authorities announced that Morsi was being the subject of a criminal investigation [JURIST report] for spying, ruining the economy and inciting violence.

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