Monday, November 26, 2012

Egypt: Live Updates

The Guardian

"'Protesters fired shots' [The same lies used during Mubarak's era!]

Egypt's interior minister Ahmed Gamal has claimed that protesters fired shots during last week's protests, while police only used teargas, Aswat Masriya reports. Gamal is quoted as saying:
The birdshot wounds were found in both parties. The shots that hit the police came from afar while the ones that hit protesters came from a short distance - which proves that the shots came from among the protesters......
Morsi power grab

The Egyptian president followed up Thursday's constitutional decree by ratifying a law on Saturday allowing the government to appoint its loyalists to the Egyptian Trade Union Federation, the Egypt Independent reports.
It says it was the first law enacted in the wake of the decree protecting his decisions from judicial challenged and was made "without any formal announcement".
According to the new law, the manpower minister, who is affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, may appoint workers who are members of the group in leadership positions that would become vacant in the ETUF, which has always been affiliated with the government ...
Labour activists fear the law paves the way for Brotherhood control of the federation ...
Ahmed Abdel Zaher, chairman of the ETUF, criticised amendments to the law.
The amendments, he said, violate international agreements Egypt had signed with the International Labor Organization, especially those related to trade unions’ freedom from governmental interventions.
Abdel Zaher told news website Sada al-Balad that Manpower Minister Khaled al-Azhary had introduced the amendments without consulting the ETUF.......

Egypt analysis

Here is a taste of what commentators are saying about the situation in Egypt.
The Arabist's Issandr El Amrani writes, on the National, that Morsi overplayed his hand domestically after foreign policy success:
Where Mr Morsi overstepped is that he formally gave himself open-ended powers to make decrees that are immune from judicial oversight (therefore barring any legal recourse against them), giving himself licence to do pretty much anything else he pleases in the name of national security. He claims that this is a temporary measure to ensure that the country reaches its end goal - a new constitution and a new elected parliament - as quickly as possible. To achieve this, he is taking absolute power for three months or so, and promising to use it sparingly.
Were Mr Morsi a beloved national leader of the stature of a Nelson Mandela, he might have pulled it off. But he is the backup candidate of an organisation - the Muslim Brotherhood - mistrusted by many of his countrymen. He was elected (narrowly) by a coalition brought together by the fact that his opponent was worse. And he made this decision at a time of unprecedented polarisation - over the constitution and religion's role within it, over the performance of the cabinet, and indeed over the poor excuse for a transitional framework to democracy that the country inherited from 16 months of disastrous military rule. Mr Morsi's political capital is simply not as plentiful as he seems to believe, as the furious reaction by opposition leaders and protesters on Friday showed......" 

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