Qatar ‘Surprised’ Mursi Still Detained in Egypt, Urges Dialogue

Qatar, the Arab world’s main backer of deposed Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi, expressed “surprise” that he remains detained and called for dialogue to end violence between his supporters and opponents.

“The one way out of the crisis in sister Egypt is a political solution based on dialogue,” state-run Qatar News Agency said late yesterday, citing a foreign ministry official it didn’t identify. “That cannot happen when one party in that dialogue is absent and its symbol is detained.”

Qatar also expressed “concern” over civilian deaths in the fighting that followed Mursi’s July 3 overthrow, according to QNA. Dozens have died in the clashes.

Egypt’s military ousted Mursi after days of mass rallies against his rule and has held him at an undisclosed location since.

Qatar, a strong supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood that fielded Mursi for office, extended Egypt $8 billion in aid during his year in power. The backing set Qatar apart from neighbors Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, which extended $12 billion to the military-backed government that replaced Mursi’s.

The Qatari leadership changed last month when the former Emir Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani abdicated in favor his son Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani. The new emir appointed Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani as prime minister, replacing Hamad Bin Jassim Al Thani, architect of a foreign policy that backed the uprisings across the Arab world.

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Tuttle in Doha at rtuttle@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net

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