News / Middle East

Egypt's Morsi Plans Cabinet Reshuffle

Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi speaks to reporters at the Presidential palace in Cairo in this July 13, 2012 file photo.
Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi speaks to reporters at the Presidential palace in Cairo in this July 13, 2012 file photo.
Reuters
Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi said on Saturday he planned to reshuffle his Cabinet in a move that could help build political consensus around a $4.8 billion loan Cairo is seeking from the International Monetary Fund.

Morsi's opponents have been demanding the formation of a new government to oversee parliamentary elections expected to begin later this year. The United States, a major donor to Cairo, has grown more critical of Morsi of late, listing a lack of political inclusivity as one of its concerns.

The IMF has stressed the need for broad support for a loan agreement seen as vital to easing Egypt's economic crisis but which is also likely to bring with it politically-sensitive austerity measures such as tax increases and subsidy cuts.

An IMF technical mission held 12 days of talks on the loan agreement but left earlier this week without an agreement. While in Cairo, the mission met with an array of Egyptian opposition parties in an effort to broaden support for any deal.
    
Tension between Morsi and his more secular-minded opponents has fueled spasms of unrest since late last year, undermining hopes for economic recovery.

In pre-recorded comments to al-Jazeera of which the channel aired segments ahead of the expected airing of a full interview later on Saturday, Morsi said the reshuffle would include multiple ministries and would happen soon.

On Twitter, he said he would also change some of his provincial governors.

"Cabinet reshuffle and governors' appointments, the most efficient will take up responsibility in order to achieve the demands of the revolution," Morsi tweeted, referring to the 2011 uprising that ousted then President Hosni Mubarak.

Morsi did not say whether the reshuffle would include Prime Minister Hisham Kandil, whose performance has drawn increasingly fierce criticism, including from the Muslim Brotherhood movement that propelled the president to power in an election last June.

Kandil was a little-known technocrat at the time of his appointment last July. Economists have faulted his government, which includes Brotherhood members in some ministries, for failing to get the economy moving.

It seems unlikely that Morsi will be able to draw his most critical opponents into government for now: the political division runs too deep. But he may be able to bring some liberals and moderated Islamists into cabinet, said Yasser el-Shimy, Egypt analyst with the International Crisis Group.

"Some of the ministers involved in the IMF negotiations will keep their jobs, such as [Planning Minister] Ashraf al-Araby, but I think the IMF would be happy to see a coalition government," el-Shimy said. "They would like to see a more consensual approach to politics."

"With the parliamentary elections potentially not happening for six months, there might be hope that they can defuse the political standoff," he added.

Morsi's opponents are also demanding the removal of the prosecutor general, who was appointed by the president in November in controversial circumstances.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More