Egypt's Military Won’t Allow Extremists to Take Over

By Staff | April 5, 2011 | 6:12 AM EDT

Cairo (AP) - Egypt's ruling generals say they will not allow "extremist" groups to take over the country and that they prefer to see a "moderate" religious ideology prevail in the mainly Muslim nation.

The comments by members of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces appeared designed to calm growing fears that militant Islamic groups now operating openly will try to impose their strict interpretation of Islam on Egypt.

The comments were made during a meeting Monday between three generals and editors of national newspapers and Egypt's official news agency. They were published on Tuesday.

The military took over the country when authoritarian President Hosni Mubarak stepped down on Feb. 11 in the face of a popular 18-day uprising. He ruled Egypt for 29 years.