Morsy pledges to be president of all Egyptians

News article, posted 06.25.2012, from Egypt, in:
Morsy pledges to be president of all Egyptians (Photo: Al-Masry Al-Youm)

Egypt’s new president-elect, Mohamed Morsy, said on Sunday he would be a leader "for all Egyptians" and called for national unity after a polarizing race.

In his first televised speech on state TV, Morsy declared he would be a leader "of all Egyptians — Muslims, Christians, the elderly, children, women, men, farmers, teachers, workers, those who work in the private and public sectors, and merchants."

"I call on you, the great people of Egypt ... to strengthen our national unity," he said, adding that national unity "is the only way out of these difficult times."

Morsy vowed to honor international treaties and pledged to preserve Egypt’s international accords, a reference to the peace deal with Israel.

"We will preserve all international treaties and charters ... we come in peace," he said.

Egypt was the first Arab country to sign a peace treaty with Israel.

"We'll establish balanced relations with all of the world's countries on the basis of common interests," he said, hours after he was declared president-elect following a deeply divisive race against Ahmed Shafiq, the last premier to serve ousted President Hosni Mubarak. Morsi won 51.73 percent of the vote, with 13,230,131 ballots.

The election has polarized the nation, dividing those who feared a return to the old regime under Shafiq from others who wanted to keep religion out of politics and who feared the Brotherhood would stifle personal freedoms.

He paid tribute to nearly 900 protesters killed in last year’s uprising, saying without the “blood of the martyrs,” he would not have made it to the presidency. "

“The revolution continues, until all its demands are met," he stressed.

In his non-confrontational speech, he did not mention the last-minute power grab by the ruling military that stripped the president of most of his major powers.