Middle East

Egypt cleric goes into seclusion 'until violence ends'

A injured man is wheeled into a hospital in Cairo following clashes between police and Muslim Brotherhood supporters of deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi outside the Republican Guards base in Cairo, July 8, 2013. Sunni Islam's leading cleric, Ahmed al-Tayyeb, said on Monday he will retire into seclusion until the end of violence in Egypt, after bloody clashes that left 42 people dead.

A injured man is wheeled into a hospital in Cairo following clashes between police and Muslim Brotherhood supporters of deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi outside the Republican Guards base in Cairo, July 8, 2013. Sunni Islam's leading cleric, Ahmed al-Tayyeb, said on Monday he will retire into seclusion until the end of violence in Egypt, after bloody clashes that left 42 people dead.  (AFP)

Sunni Islam's leading cleric, Ahmed al-Tayyeb, said on Monday he will retire into seclusion until the end of violence in Egypt, after bloody clashes that left 42 people dead.

Tayyeb, who heads the Cairo-based Al-Azhar -- Sunni Islam's highest seat of learning -- said he would "remain in seclusion in his house until all the spilling of Egyptian blood ends and those behind it take responsibility".

The grand imam was a key party to army-sponsored talks that yielded a roadmap for a political transition in Egypt after the military's ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi on Wednesday.

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