Egyptians will rise up against military rule because of widespread human rights abuses and economic hardships, former presidential candidate Abdel Moneim Abol Fotouh said on Tuesday.
Egypt's political transition and its economy have stumbled since the 2011 uprising that ousted autocrat Hosni Mubarak.
In July, army chief Field Marshal Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ousted the country's first freely elected president, Mohamed Mursi, after mass protests against his rule. A severe crackdown on Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood and any other opponents of the army-backed government has followed. Egypt remains unstable.
"The people will get angry again and stage a revolution to oust this repression. The Egyptian people will not accept the current situation," said Abol Fotouh, a former Brotherhood member who came fourth in the 2012 election won by Mursi.
"The current repression is 10 times worse than Mubarak's time," he told Reuters in an interview.
Abol Fotouh, 62, is one of the few Islamists left in public life since the crackdown that has landed Mursi and many of his allies in jail. Hundreds of his supporters have been killed.
Abol Fotouh said Mubarak loyalists are back with a vengeance and are determined to crush freedoms gained since the 2011 revolt to protect their interests and corrupt practices.
"What is happening now is a counter-revolution against the January revolution but it won't continue. The revolution will return," said the retired physician, adding that Egypt had become a failed state.
"There will be no stability for this region except through freedom and democracy. Without this there will be chaos and violence."