Shafiq’s campaign denies remarks quoted in New York Times

An official source with the presidential campaign of former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq denied a New York Times report that Shafiq said he would use excessive force and executions to restore security. The story has been picked up by several Egyptian newspapers and websites.

The source accused the New York Times of defamation and said that the paper mistranslated what he said during a meeting with the American Chamber of Commerce in Egypt on 15 May.

The newspaper said that Shafiq “suggested that he would use executions and brutal force to restore order within a month.”

The source said that a recording of the meeting, which was attended by people interested in the economy, businessmen, thinkers and a number of ambassadors from foreign countries, is available on the official websites of the chamber of commerce for reference.

The source said it is illogical that the presidential hopeful would use excessive force and executions to restore order and security, adding that these claims come amid other defamation campaigns against Shafiq.

Shafiq will compete against the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate Mohamed Mosy in the presidential runoff on 16 and 17 June.  

Shafiq’s success in the first round of the presidential election has caused an uproar among revolutionary forces, who have called for protests against his participation in the runoff. Shafiq was the last prime minister of the toppled Mubarak regime.

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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