Top Egypt cleric goes into seclusion 'until violence ends'

Sunni Islam's leading cleric, Ahmed al-Tayyeb, said on Monday he will retire into seclusion until the end of violence in Egypt, after bloody clashes that left 42 people dead.

Tayyeb, who heads the Cairo-based Al-Azhar -- Sunni Islam's highest seat of learning -- said he would "remain in seclusion in his house until all the spilling of Egyptian blood ends and those behind it take responsibility".

The grand imam was a key party to army-sponsored talks that yielded a roadmap for a political transition in Egypt after the military's ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi on Wednesday.