Egypt swears in cabinet for recently elected President Sisi

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Egypt is moving forward with a different president and government three years after deposing longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak and a year after the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohamed Morsi was deposed.

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Copyright 2014 Reuters
Copyright 2014 Reuters

Egypt swore in its first cabinet under President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi on June 17. It retains 21 ministers from the military-appointed interim government, including Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab, and others who previously were ministers. It also eliminated the controversial Ministry of Information.

"[The parliamentary elections law] is not at all what we expected and it will weaken political parties and allow the return of a parliament similar to what we had during Mubarak's days." Khaled Dawoud, Al-Dostour Party

On June 5, outgoing interim president Adly Mansour reverted parliamentary election law to a previous system in which individual candidates take a majority of seats in parliament, or 420 out of 567. The system changed after Mubarak was ousted in 2011 to give the majority to party lists and weaken wealthy or influential individuals.

The 2011 election law helped sweep Muslim Brotherhood candidates to power because the group had a large organization in place. The group was banned in 2013, and cannot run in elections scheduled for late 2014. A fractured opposition remains, and the military has cracked down on vocal opponents.

Sisi was declared winner of presidential elections on June 3 with 96.1% of the vote. Officials said turnout was about 47% of 53 million eligible voters -- less than the 52% when Morsi won in June 2012 -- despite an extra day of voting. His sole challenger Hamdeen Sabahi got 735,285, well below the 1.07 million invalid votes.

"Obviously this is a critical moment of transition in Egypt… [there are] enormous challenges." U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry

Kerry arrived in Egypt June 22 for the first high-level talks since President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi took office. The talks will cover the situations in Iraq and Syria, as well as the country's treatment of journalists, and mass trials of Muslim Brotherhood members.

Documents leaked on June 1 show that the Ministry of Interior, which runs the state security apparatus, is building a "monitoring instrument" to access data on social media sites. The tools will identify "those who pose a threat to society" as well as keywords that might indicate a violation of law and morals.

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Although Egypt's constitution makes the president the commander of the military, a decree by interim President Adly Mansour on Feb. 27 removed the executive as head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces. The move gave further autonomy to the military, which is already shielded from civilian oversight.

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The final tally of votes on Jan. 14-15 for Egypt's constitution was 98.1% in favor. Nationwide turnout was 38.6%, which was higher than the 2012 referendum in which 30% voted. The results were largely viewed as an endorsement for military chief Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to run for president. Copyright 2014 Reuters

The final tally of votes on Jan. 14-15 for Egypt's constitution was 98.1% in favor. Nationwide turnout was 38.6%, which was higher than the 2012 referendum in which 30% voted. The results were largely viewed as an endorsement for military chief Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi to run for president.

Thirteen people were killed Jan. 3, 2014, as supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood clashed with police across Egypt. Supporters had been holding daily demonstrations since the government declared it a terrorist organization a week earlier. By March, the frequency of protests had diminished. Copyright 2014 Reuters

Thirteen people were killed Jan. 3, 2014, as supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood clashed with police across Egypt. Supporters had been holding daily demonstrations since the government declared it a terrorist organization a week earlier. By March, the frequency of protests had diminished.

A state of emergency was declared in Aug. 2013 after security forces violently cleared two sit-ins of supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi, killing 638 and injuring nearly 4,000. It was the worst day of violence in Egypt since the 2011 uprising. The state of emergency ended in Nov. 2013. Copyright 2014 Reuters

A state of emergency was declared in Aug. 2013 after security forces violently cleared two sit-ins of supporters of ousted President Mohamed Morsi, killing 638 and injuring nearly 4,000. It was the worst day of violence in Egypt since the 2011 uprising. The state of emergency ended in Nov. 2013.

The Muslim Brotherhood lost an appeal on Nov. 6 to the Sept. 23 ban on all its activities in Egypt. The decision included the seizure of the group's "money, assets and buildings." Several prominent members have been arrested or barred from traveling.

On the one-year anniversary of Mohamed Morsi's election, millions of demonstrators rallied across Egypt in June 2013, calling for his resignation and for early elections. The protests were likely larger than any during the 2011 revolution. Sisi announced July 3, 2013, that Morsi was no longer president. Copyright 2014 Reuters

On the one-year anniversary of Mohamed Morsi's election, millions of demonstrators rallied across Egypt in June 2013, calling for his resignation and for early elections. The protests were likely larger than any during the 2011 revolution. Sisi announced July 3, 2013, that Morsi was no longer president.

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