Russia expresses concern over Egypt clashes
Moscow believes that the only way to restore peace in Egypt is to make sure the actions of all sides are in line with the law, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday, RIA Novosti reported.
The largest country in the Arab world with a population of 80 million, Egypt, plunged into mass opposition riots on January 25 with thousands of people demanding President Hosni Mubarak step down after three decades in power.
"What is happening in Egypt raises serious concerns in Moscow," spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said.
At least seven people have been killed and up to 1,000 arrested since the protests began, inspired by the so-called Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia. Tunisian President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia earlier in January.
Lukashevich said the most important challenge was making sure the developing situation in Egypt does not become unlawful.
"We are convinced that this is the only way to restore stability in the country, to ensure the interests of all segments of the population and to find solutions to pressing problems," he said.
The official said the Russian Embassy had no information that Russian citizens had been caught up in the street clashes and reiterated earlier Foreign Ministry advice that Russians in Egypt remain indoors.
"In all circumstances, we firmly expect that the Egyptian side will provide for the security of Russian citizens," a statement said.