News / Africa

Egypt's President and Military on Collision Course

In this image released by the Egyptian President, an Egyptian military officer salutes President Mohammed Morsi, third from right at a graduation ceremony at a military base east of Cairo, Egypt, July 9, 2012.
In this image released by the Egyptian President, an Egyptian military officer salutes President Mohammed Morsi, third from right at a graduation ceremony at a military base east of Cairo, Egypt, July 9, 2012.
Margaret Besheer
CAIRO —  Egypt's newly elected president Mohamed Morsi appears on a collision course with the country's powerful military generals after ordering the parliament to reconvene, in defiance of a high court decree last month that dissolved the legislature.

Last month, Egypt's generals dissolved parliament in line with an order from the country's highest court. On Sunday, President Morsi, who was sworn-in only one week ago, decreed that the legislature - which is dominated by his fellow Islamists - should reconvene until a new one has been elected.

He said elections would be held within 60 days of a new constitution being drafted and approved in a referendum, a process that analysts say could take months.

The surprise announcement sent the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces or SCAF into emergency mode, with a hastily called meeting Sunday night that resumed on Monday.

Later on Monday, the Supreme Constitutional Court declared that its ruling on dissolving the parliament was final and binding.

Hafez Abu Saada, a lawyer and head of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, says he believes the president could have handled this differently and has now created a politically fraught situation.

He says he believes this could have been dealt with in different ways, but that it is a clash and it could mean the emergence of a kind of cold war between the presidency, the military council and civil forces.

Fahmy Howeidi, a columnist with the independent daily ElShorouk, notes the timing of the president's decree, just days ahead of his first overseas trip and before a visit to Cairo by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

“I think this decision could have been delayed, but why did he decide to declare or to decide about the parliament before his departure to Saudia? Is he sending a message saying he is the real ruler, not the military? You know that Washington criticized the military for their latest statement [dissolving parliament], so was he encouraged by this criticism, in order to embarrass the military?,” Howeidi said.

Lawyer Abu Saada says President Morsi's decision to challenge a verdict of the Supreme Constitutional Court is unprecedented in modern Egypt -- something that even Hosni Mubarak, Anwar Sadat and Gamal Abdel Nasser never did.

He says the president took an oath to respect the law and the constitution and did so in front of the constitutional court, yet he is the first to violate the rulings of that court. As a result, he says, this is a message to society that you can challenge the verdicts of the judiciary and not respect them.

While no one expected an easy relationship between the army and the conservative Muslim president, most believed Morsi would move more cautiously and not provoke a confrontation with the generals so quickly.

But Fahmy Howeidi is taking a wait-and-see approach. He says private talks are still continuing on all sides and the people must wait a bit longer to see how this first act will play out.

You May Like

Lion Cecil's Killing Sparks 'Canned Hunting' Debate in S. Africa

Conservationists believe incident, which triggered worldwide outrage, will reshape debate about practice in which hunters are allowed to target animals bred for hunting More

Taliban's New Leader Says Jihad Will Continue

Top US Afghan diplomat also meets with Pakistani, Afghan officials following news of Mullah Omar's death More

Environmentalists Issue Warning on Mekong Biodiversity

Scientists say decades of economic development, hydropower-dam construction, lax law enforcement and trafficking have taken their toll More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mohammad Kamran Umar from: Kabul, Afghanistan
July 10, 2012 2:25 AM
A leopard can change it's skin if you donkeys let him to change...
they Islamists shown to the world that Muslims no longer tolerate the governance of Western Servants and nor they can tolerate the intervien of the western cranks in their internal affairs...
It has got nothing to do with these stupid cranks that they intervene about the execution of a woman on what she has been caught on ...
This is the God 's Sharia Law let to to enforced on anybody who caught on such sin regardless of their rank, color, ethnicity
I am Sure Inshallah one day such Hodods will be implemented not only in Islamic countries but also in European and Western contries that is not far ....

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
July 09, 2012 2:32 PM
A leopard cannot change its skin. The Arab man only knows rules through the nozzle of a gun and brute force. Look at the jungle justice in Afghanistan and tribal Pakistan, (Morsi will still publicly execute a woman caught in adultery). Civilized justice system is too drab for him, even though you think his education in the West means anything. It's in keeping with the saying that even though you bath a pig and dress it in suite, it must still return to the refuse dump. It's not because US criticized the court dissolution of the house, it's to be true to his type - know only brutal force. And that's what to expect from Egypt henceforth.
In Response

by: Plain Mirror from: Nigeria/Cote d'ivoire
July 10, 2012 4:10 AM
You are right my dear. President Morsi should be wise. He shouldn't be faster than his shadows. Democracy is still a virgin in Egypt and as such Morsi should not make any force trust into into. He should also lead by example by respecting the supreme court. If he fails to do so, then Egypt would likely fall into a Democratic anarchy.
In Response

by: Mike from: USA
July 09, 2012 6:57 PM
You are right, the fox change his hair but not his behavior, the ignorance of the west in Islam that what make them look so dummy in the eye of everyone how comes from middle east or Africa, we know them better, I think it is a time for Obama to kick the 80 some Muslim advisers and replace them with middle eastern Christian and he has to close all the Muslim organization in the USA, if their bylaws and their religion calling to kill every Jewish and Christian, how any government could allow these organization to exist. Would Obama allow any organization that call for the killing of all Muslims where ever you find them to exist in the USA or any part of the world? If Muslim denies that their religion does not say that then they have to change the Koran and make it more human to women and others.
In Response

by: Nad from: Canada
July 09, 2012 6:46 PM
Only a disillusioned nig nog raisin head would think to type a piggish response as you (Godwin) did. You are true as the savage country you live in. Arabs tried to make you African wilted grapes into human-beings . Know your Masters!!!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missionsi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X
George Putic
July 30, 2015 8:59 PM
Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.

VOA Blogs