Egyptian military chief warns state could collapse

The head of the Egyptian military has warned that political conflict in the country could lead to the collapse of the state.

General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who is also Egypt's defence minister, warned: "The continuation of the struggle of the different political forces ... over the management of state affairs could lead to the collapse of the state."

He also said that protecting the Suez Canal - a vital shipping route - was one of the main aims of the army deployment in the cities shaken by violence over the last week.

President Mohamed Mursi has declared a state of emergency and a curfew in three Suez Canal cities, after continued violence responding to the sentencing to death of 21 people for their role in deadly rioting at a football stadium in Port Said last February.

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Army warns of Egypt collapse

The head of the Egyptian military has warned the ongoing political conflict could lead to the collapse of the state. Seven people have reportedly been shot dead and hundreds injured in Port Said during the funerals of 33 protesters killed in the city