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Egyptian president asks public to fund national projects after his mother's passing

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CAIRO — The Egyptian presidency says President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi's mother has died and urges Egyptians to support public projects instead of paying for notices offering condolences on her passing.

Monday's statement didn't say how old el-Sissi's mother, Soad Ibrahim, was or give the cause of death.

PHOTO: FILE - In this Aug. 6, 2015 file photo, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi waves as he arrives to the opening ceremony of the new section of the Suez Canal in Ismailia, Egypt. A new 54-article anti-terrorism bill signed into law by el-Sissi was announced on Monday, Aug. 17, 2015, establishing stiffer prison sentences for offences deemed to be terrorism-related, heavy fines for journalists who publish “false news” and a special judicial circuit for terrorism-related cases. Egypt has not had a parliament for over two years, and legislative authority rests with el-Sissi. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar, File)
FILE - In this Aug. 6, 2015 file photo, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi waves as he arrives to the opening ceremony of the new section of the Suez Canal in Ismailia, Egypt. A new 54-article anti-terrorism bill signed into law by el-Sissi was announced on Monday, Aug. 17, 2015, establishing stiffer prison sentences for offences deemed to be terrorism-related, heavy fines for journalists who publish “false news” and a special judicial circuit for terrorism-related cases. Egypt has not had a parliament for over two years, and legislative authority rests with el-Sissi. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar, File)

The 60-year-old el-Sissi has often referred to his mother in interviews, saying she taught him "impartiality." He had recently alluded in public to her being unwell.

He had also said she was the first person he went to see after, as military chief, he ousted Islamic President Mohammed Morsi in July 2013.

The presidency's statement asked that instead of spending money on newspaper notices and publications of condolences, citizens instead donate to a public fund that el-Sissi created to finance projects to revive the country's economy.

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