PARIS: Egypt's ambassador to France said any sanctions imposed on the government by the European Union would do nothing more than play into the hands of extremist groups that have no interest in political dialogue.
EU foreign ministers are debating on Wednesday in Brussels how to use their economic muscle to force Egypt's army-backed rulers to end a crackdown on deposed President Mohamed Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood.
Speaking at the embassy in Paris, Mohamed Moustafa Kamal said using economic cooperation to exert pressure on Egypt was unacceptable.
"We cannot accept that pressure be put on the will of the Egyptian people," Kamal, whose appointment to Paris was rubber-stamped by Mursi in 2012, told reporters.
"What's more ... sometimes these sort of messages can give a false impression to parties who practice violence because they can believe that the international community supports them."
Kamal's news conference was preceded by a 30-minute video that he said showed "acts of terrorism" committed by militia linked to the Muslim Brotherhood.
He said the interim authorities would keep to the political roadmap set in July and urged the Freedom and Justice Party, the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood, to return to the negotiating table.
"In Egypt, like in any other country, you don't talk with people who use weapons to negotiate. These aren't political parties," Kamal said.
"We are in favour of all dialogue in a political context, in the context of national reconciliation, and we're ready to make every effort in that regard."