By Kathryn Maureen Ryan
Impunity Watch Reporter, Middle East
CAIRO, Egypt – Just three years after the Arab Spring took hold in Egypt, bringing thousands of young people out into the streets to call for democratization and an end President Mubarak’s military regime, a bloody regime characterized by fear and violence, Egypt appears to be moving closer to a new presidency; hand-picked by the state’s military.
Egypt’s Prime minister, Hazem al-Beblawy, announced the early resignation of the interim cabinet on Monday. Al-Beblawy was appointed to serve as Egypt’s interim head of government until the nation could elect a new president, however following weeks of criticism his government resigned on Monday. Egypt’s Interim President Adly Mansour reportedly requested that outgoing Prime Minister Hazem al Beblawy – to run the government’s affairs until a new prime minister can be named.
In a speech, al-Beblawy called on the Egyptian people to take greater personal responsibility in solving the nation’s economic and political problems. “It is time we all sacrificed for the good of the country. Rather than asking what Egypt has given us, we should instead be asking what we have done for Egypt,” Beblawy was quoted as saying in state-run media. He added that while in office his government has “made every effort to get Egypt out of the narrow tunnel in terms of security, economic pressures and political confusion.”
The sudden resignation of the interim government paves the way for army chief Field Marshal Abdel Fatah el-Sissi to announce his candidacy for the presidency.
Sissi, was a member of the interim candidate, serving as Defence Minister. The government resignation was seen as necessary because he would first have to leave his office in order to run for the Presidency.
According to one Egyptian official, this action was sees as a necessary move ahead of Sissi’s announcement that he will seek the Presidency. The official also said that the entire cabinet resigned in one move in order to create an image of unity and make it seem that Sissi was not acting alone.
The presidential elections will be the first held since the overthrow of Egypt’s first democracy elected President Mohamed Morsi, a move may considered the beginning of a pendulum swing back to the old politics of the Mubarak regime, sparked the bloodiest rise in modern Egyptian history. Egyptian security forces killed hundreds and arrested thousands of Islamists and supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood.
The Muslim Brotherhood has accused Sissi of planning a coup to remove the democratically elected Morsi regime from power in order to restore a military-centric doctoral government similar to that which existed under President Mubarak.
For more information please see:
Al Arabiya – Egypt’s Govt Resigns, Sparking Controversy – 24 February 2014
The Guardian – Egypt’s Prime Minister and Cabinet Resign – 24 February 2014
The Washington Post – Egyptian Cabinet Resigns, Paving Way for Military Chief To Run For President – 24 February 2014
The Washington Post – Egypt’s Cabinet Resigns, Sets Stage for Presidency – 24 February 2014