/>
X

Egypt's President loosens grip but doesn't let go of power grab

President Mohamed Morsi said in a statement Monday that while his controversial edict stands, the authority it grants him is not as absolute as originally implied.
thumb_lg_jwilson_02_140x100.jpg
Written by Jenny Wilson, Contributing Editor on
Image via Flickr / Jonathan Rashad

After a sweeping assertion of power last Thursday caused tensions to rise, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi said in a statement Monday that while his edict stands, the authority it grants him is not as absolute as originally implied. Issued last week, the controversial decree made the President immune to judicial oversight, expanding his executive authority and giving him broad power over the courts. It resulted in several days of protest in the country, criticism from the judiciary, and violent clashes between supporters and opponents reminiscent of demonstrations during the overthrow of former dictator Hosni Mubarak in 2011. An emergency meeting called in Cairo Monday between Morsi and Egypt's Supreme Judicial Council aimed to resolve disputes, diffuse crisis, and restore peace.

Whether it served to do so remains to be seen. The result was a compromise the President's office describes as clarification rather than reversal--or even amendment--of his decree. After the meeting, spokesman Yassir Ali issued a statement assuring the public the broad power given to Morsi under the decree only applied to "sovereignty-related issues." He said the President had, "the utmost respect for the judicial authority and its members" and this was a temporary measure meant only to last through parliamentary elections and the establishment of a new constitution.

Again, it's unclear whether this will suffice to quell fears in the country as Morsi says the text of the Presidential decree remains in place. Those protesting it on the grounds that it leaves Morsi's power too unchecked likely will continue to do so, and comments from some of Egypt's top judges indicate they view the situation as unresolved as well. Shortly after the statement was released judicial council member Abdelrahman Bahloul said it was, "frail and does not represent the members of the council."

[via NBC, Washington Post, LA Times, Wall Street Journal]

Related on SmartPlanet:

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

Related

Apple politely explains why iPhone cases are a waste of money
Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max

Apple politely explains why iPhone cases are a waste of money

Apple
The 8 best iPhone models of 2022
iphone-12-models.png

The 8 best iPhone models of 2022

iPhone
Delta Air Lines just made a callous admission that customers may find galling
screen-shot-2022-07-18-at-5-18-46-pm.png

Delta Air Lines just made a callous admission that customers may find galling

Business