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Egypt Names Six Provincial Governors, Mostly Ex-generals

FILE - In this July 22, 2015, photo provided by the office of the Egyptian Presidency, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, (C), and Defense Minister Sedqi Sobh, (L), stand at attention at the Air Defense Academy in Alexandria, Egypt. Maj-Gen. Mohammed Ali el-Sheikh, an Egyptian army general who retired about 18 months ago, has been named the country’s supply minister.

Egypt's president named six new provincial governors Wednesday, in a series of appointments that extended the influence of the military and security forces.

Five of the six new governors held senior roles in Homeland Security and the military before their appointment by President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi, the former general who became Egypt's leader after the army ousted Mohamed Morsi in 2013.

Three of the six positions were previously held by civilians. With the appointments, only eight of Egypt's 27 provincial governors now have civilian backgrounds.

For decades, many provincial governors came from the army or police. After Morsi was elected president, following the 2011 revolt that ended Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule, he briefly named more civilians, including members of the Muslim Brotherhood, to which he belonged. Under Sissi, the role of former soldiers and police is being restored.

Wednesday's appointments include the naming of former Transport Minister Atef Abdel Hamid, an ex-army officer, as governor of Cairo, a position that has been vacant for six months.

The governors were sworn in Wednesday, as was the new supply minister, Mohamed Ali el-Sheikh, another former major general whose nomination was approved by parliament Tuesday.