A wide-ranging decree issued by Egyptian President Mohammed Mursi raises very serious human rights concerns, U.N. Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay’s spokesman said on Friday.
“We are very concerned about the possible huge ramifications of this declaration on human rights and the rule of law in Egypt,” Rupert Colville told a news briefing at the United Nations in Geneva. “We also fear this could lead to a very volatile situation over the next few days, starting today in fact.”
Meanwhile, supporters and opponents of Mursi called rival demonstrations Friday after the Islamist leader assumed sweeping powers in what critics dubbed a “coup.”
An array of liberal and secular groups, including activists at the forefront of the protest movement that forced veteran strongman Hosni Mubarak from power early last year, planned to march on Tahrir Square, Cairo’s iconic protest hub, to demonstrate against the “new pharaoh.”
A rundown of the main presidential decrees made in the announcement.
1. President announces that all decisions, laws and declarations passed by the president since taking office cannot be appealed or revoked by any authority, including the judicary.
2. President announces that Egypt's constitution-drafting body and the Shura Council (uppper house of parliament) cannot be dissolved by any authority, including the judicary. In addition, the timeframe for drafting the constitution has been extended by two months, to eight months in total. The Constituent Assembly was due to hand in the final draft of Egypt's national charter by the 5 December.
3. President announces the re-trial all those charged with killing or injuring protesters involved in revolutionary demonstrations since January 25 Revolution. In addition, all Mubarak-era officials responsible for terrorizing protesters will be retried.
4. President announces appointment of Talaat Ibrahim as prosecutor-general in place of Abdel-Meguid Mahmoud.
(Courtesy: Ahram Online)