Egypt: Army and Islamists Reach Agreement

June 26, 2012  

The Muslim Brotherhood and Egypt’s powerful military on Tuesday reached some agreements over the powers of the most populous Arab nation’s first Islamist president, and the fate of a now-dissolved Islamist-led parliament.

Newly elected president Mohammed Morsi briefly toured his palace on Monday. Morsi, however, had little time to savor his victory.

Egypt’s first president since late president Hosni Mubarak was ousted, Morsi immediately met with senior generals in the Defence Ministry in what analysts say was an effort to determine who will really run the nation.

The powerful Brotherhood – banned under Mubarak – sent waves of supporters onto the streets last week after the Supreme Constitutional Court ordered the lower house dissolved.

The ruling asserted that electoral rules had been broken during the election that led to the Brotherhood’s rise to parliamentary prominence six months ago.

The decision, backed by the army, threatened to force a new parliamentary election, leading the Brotherhood and its Islamist allies to say the ruling was tantamount to a military coup.

The army compounded these fears by issuing a decree curbing the president’s powers just as the presidential election closed.

Morsi was declared the winner on Sunday, a week after the polls closed. According to sources on both sides, the Brotherhood and the army held discreet talks during the wait.

The new president is expected to be sworn in on Saturday, probably before the Constitutional Court. The Brotherhood says it will also stage a symbolic swearing-in ceremony in Tahrir Square.

Egyptian presidents are traditionally sworn in by parliament, which has been sealed and placed under military guard.

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