Egypt`s Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi announces Friday he will not run for president, dismissing talk of his candidacy
News that Defense Minister Abdel Fattah al-Sisi would run for Egypt`s presidency is ‘utterly false,` according to a statement released on Friday by Field Marshal.
An interview with military spokesman Ahmed Ali on Daily News Egypt (DNE) sparked rumors that al-Sisi will be a presidential candidate in the upcoming presidential elections.
Al-Sisi is "currently a soldier in the armed forces and does not aspire to any other role," Ali stated in the interview published on Thursday. "Assuming that he retired and people suggested he ran for presidency, is this not the democratic process?"
Following the interview, many speculated that al-Sisi would run in the next presidential elections. Some political figures were quick to denounce the move stating that Egypt should have a civilian president.
"El-Sisi is proud of leading the great establishment of the army, and the role it played and is still playing to protect the Egyptian national security through the ages," the statement read, affirming that he is "not looking for more than that."
El-Sisi called on media outlets to be accurate and cautious during "this critical stage in our nation`s history."
The Daily News Egypt published a clarification, which Ali shared on Facebook along with al-Sisi`s statement, stating that the question was asked "because of al-Sisi’s rising popularity on the streets."
"What colonial Ali was explaining is that the military institute does not control who runs for presidential elections even if he was ex-military," the statement added.
The Daily News Egypt also called on media outlets to "be thorough in their coverage of such sensitive matters and to analyze the interview as a whole, instead of sensualizing what the DNE has not reported."
El-Sisi gained popularity after the removal of president Morsi on 3 July, to the content of millions who took to the streets demanding Morsi’s resignation.
[This article originally appeared on Ahram Online.]