Egypt army says ready to die in "final hours"

CAIRO Tue Jul 2, 2013 9:25pm EDT

Supporters of President Mohamed Mursi carry a banner with his pictures during a protest to counter anti-Mursi protests elsewhere in Alexandria, July 2, 2013. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih

Supporters of President Mohamed Mursi carry a banner with his pictures during a protest to counter anti-Mursi protests elsewhere in Alexandria, July 2, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Asmaa Waguih

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CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's high command said on Wednesday the army was ready to die to defend Egypt's people against terrorists and fools, in a response to Islamist President Mohamed Mursi that was headlined "The Final Hours".

The post on the official Facebook page of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), headed by armed forces chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, said: "We swear to God that we will sacrifice even our blood for Egypt and its people, to defend them against any terrorist, radical or fool."

Issued three hours after Mursi appeared on television to reject an ultimatum from Sisi that he share power with his opponents or face a military solution by 10:00 a.m. EDT (1500 GMT), a military source said the statement made clear that the armed forces would not abandon their demands.

(Reporting by Yasmine Saleh; Editing by Alastair Macdonald)

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