Militants in Sinai also blew up a gas pipeline to Jordan — the first such attack in nearly a year — as soldiers and police came under attack by Islamist gunmen.
On Friday, armed Morsi supporters stormed the North Sinai Provincial Headquarters in the town of El-Arish and raised the black banner of al-Qaeda-inspired militants, a correspondent reported.
Morsi’s single year of turbulent rule was marked by accusations he failed the 2011 revolution by concentrating power in Brotherhood hands and letting the economy nosedive.
US President Barack Obama insisted the US was “not aligned” with any political party or group in Egypt following Morsi’s ouster.
Obama, who spoke with members of the US National Security Council by conference call, “condemned the ongoing violence across Egypt and expressed concern over the continued political polarization,” according to a White House statement.
“The United States categorically rejects the false claims propagated by some in Egypt that we are working with specific political parties or movements to dictate how Egypt’s transition should proceed,” the statement said. “The future path of Egypt can only be determined by the Egyptian people.”
Washington also echoed calls by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for a peaceful end to the crisis.
However, US Senator John McCain called for a suspension of US military aid to Cairo because the army had “overturned the vote of the people.”