Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

National and World

November 29, 2012

Egypt's Islamists rush through new constitution

(Continued)

The draft also includes bans on "insulting or defaming all prophets and messengers" or even "insulting humans" — broad language that analysts warned could be used to crack down on many forms of speech.

Praising the draft, panel president Hossam al-Ghiryani, told members: "We will teach this constitution to our sons."

"The Egyptian people are with us, listening to us," al-Ghiryani, an Islamist, said. "They must understand their constitution which they will vote on shortly and with which life will stabilize in Egypt, God willing."

The committee has been plagued by controversy from the start. It was created by the first parliament elected after Mubarak's ouster. But a first permutation of the assembly, also Islamist-dominated, was disbanded by the courts. A new one was created just before the lower house of parliament, also Brotherhood-led, was dissolved by the judiciary in June.

Morsi and his supporters say his decrees were necessary to "protect the revolution" and prevent the judiciary from holding up what they say is a transition to democracy. Morsi also decreed that courts cannot dissolve the Islamist-dominated upper house of parliament, known as the Shura Council — though the Constitution Court is to rule on whether to do so as well on Sunday. In protest, most of the nation's judges are on indefinite strike.

Dissolving the constitutional panel and replacing it with a more inclusive body is a key demand by the liberal-led opposition. It also calls for rescinding the president's decrees and the dismissal of Kandil's Cabinet.

Critics accuse the Brotherhood, from which Morsi hails, of using their election victories to monopolize the state, squeezing out other factions, and pushing through an Islamist vision.

It is not clear what would happen to the approved draft if the Constitutional Court dissolves the assembly on Sunday. But the escalation could move the dispute more out of the realm of legal questions and into the more volatile street to be decided by which side can bring the most support. At least two people have been killed and hundreds wounded in clashes since Friday.

___

Associated Press writer Sarah El Deeb contributed to this report.

Text Only
National and World
Local News
AP Video
Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Dempsey: Putin May Light Fire and Lose Control In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites Anti-violence Advocate Killed, but Not Silenced. Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Officials Warn of Avoidable Death in Hot Cars Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point'
Sister Newspapers' News