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Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman has said that the only alternative to dialogue as a means of resolving the ongoing political crisis was a 'coup,' reiterating that the regime would not step down.
"We want to avoid a hasty and irrational coup,” said Suleiman, former chief of general intelligence and a symbol of the country’s military establishment. “Dialogue is the right way to achieve stability and resolve the current crisis peacefully and within the context of a solid plan of action.”
Suleiman considered the word “departure,” which has been repeated by protesters in reference to the sought-after departure of embattled President Hosni Mubarak, as being contrary to the ethics of the Egyptians, who have always shown respect for their ruler.
“It's not only insulting to the president," he said, "but to the Egyptian people as well."
He stressed that Mubarak was one of the heroes of Egypt's 1973 October War with Israel, and that the military establishment could not forget its glorious history.
He also said those supporting calls for civil disobedience constituted a "grave threat to society."
"We cannot afford to wait any longer,” he said. “We must put an end to this crisis as soon as possible."