Thousands of Muslim Brotherhood supporters have filled Cairo's Tahrir Square and most of the country's Squares on Friday demanding that Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi should be declared the winner of the presidential elections.
Morsi, the candidate of the Muslim Brotherhood, and Ahmed Shafiq, the former prime minister of Hosni Mubarak, have both proclaimed victory in the presidential election in advance of the official announcement by the country's electoral commission.
The results of the runoff vote were to be announced on Thursday, but their announcement was delayed in connection with a number of complaints filed by the candidates on Wednesday.
Observers believe that the delay in the run-off results has raised widespread suspicions that the result is being negotiated rather than counted as the Muslim Brotherhood candidate’s victory would be unwelcome for the military.
For its part, Egypt's ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) has criticized the publication of unofficial results of the presidential election and said it would act with "firmness" against any threat to public and private interests. In a statement issued Friday, it said the unofficial results have caused tensions in the street.
The army "will act with the greatest firmness against any attempt to undermine the public and private interests , "said SCAF in its statement read on state television. While reiterating its respect for the right to demonstrate peacefully without endangering the public and private interests, the army called on all "parties to avoid actions that would endanger national security."
SCAF's statement was issued as the Muslim Brotherhood threatened the military with "confrontation with the people" if their candidate is not recognized as the winner of the presidential vote.
Meanwhile, Morsi told a news conference he would continue to reject SCAF's decree, which was issued as polls closed on Sunday, two days after the constitutional court gave the military grounds to dissolve parliament: "The constitutional declaration clearly implies attempts by the military council to restrict the incoming president," he said. "This we totally reject," AFP news reported.
The Muslim Brotherhoods and other movements see the recent actions of the military council as a "constitutional coup," which in effect transformed the presidency into an empty shell. "The Muslim Brotherhoods and the army are preparing for the battle on Parliament," wrote Tuesday the liberal al-Wafd daily.
However, the other presidential candidate, Ahmad Shafiq said: "These protests in the squares, the campaigns of terror and the media manipulation are all attempts to force the election committee to announce a particular result.
"I am fully confident that I will be the legitimate winner," Shafiq added.