White House urges restraint by Egyptian military

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE Thu Jul 25, 2013 1:24pm EDT

Egyptian Army soldiers sit on an armoured personnel carrier (APC) on a tram track, during a patrol, as supporters of deposed president Mohamed Mursi approach the presidential palace in Cairo, July 19, 2013. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih

Egyptian Army soldiers sit on an armoured personnel carrier (APC) on a tram track, during a patrol, as supporters of deposed president Mohamed Mursi approach the presidential palace in Cairo, July 19, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Asmaa Waguih

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ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE (Reuters) - The White House on Thursday urged the Egyptian military to exercise "maximum restraint" and to do its utmost to prevent clashes between rival protesters.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest also said Washington was concerned about "any rhetoric that inflames tension" after Egyptian army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi called on Egyptians to take to the streets to show their support.

"The administration has urged the security forces to exercise maximum restraint and caution," Earnest told reporters aboard Air Force One as President Barack Obama headed for Florida. Supporters of deposed Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi and the army that toppled him prepared for rival protests on Friday.

(Reporting By Mark Felsenthal; Writing by Matt Spetalnick and Roberta Ramption; Editing by Vicki Allen)

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