Egypt's military council sacks top security officials

Egypt's military council sacks top security officials

As part of a continuing purge of Mubarak-era officials, Adly Fayed, director of public security at the interior ministry, and Ismail El Shaer, Cairo's security chief, were sacked, Al Jazeera reported.

The report said their dismissals were aimed at placating public anger against the security forces that the Mubarak government "apparently used to stifle dissent". The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces Tuesday appointed Tareq al-Bishry, former head of the supreme constitutional court, to lead a committee set up to suggest constitutional changes.

Other members include three constitutional experts, three judges and a representative of the banned opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood. Al-Bishry, a strong supporter of an independent judiciary during Hosni Mubarak's rule, said: "I have been chosen by the military council to head the committee for constitutional amendments."

The military council has vowed to rewrite the constitution and put it to a referendum within two months. The existing constitution, which the council suspended, had "built-in guarantees" to keep Mubarak and his allies in power.

Al Jazeera reported that Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq has told foreign leaders that he was trying to reshuffle his cabinet, taking out some Mubarak appointees and replacing them with others.

The Muslim Brotherhood said Tuesday it was intending to form a political party once democracy was established. "The Muslim Brotherhood group believes in the freedom of the formation of political parties. They are eager to have a political party," Mohammed Mursi, a spokesman, said in a statement on the group's website.

Essam el-Arian, another leader in the brotherhood, said the group would not run any candidate for the presidential elections, saying such a move would be too controversial.
"We are not going to have a candidate for the upcoming presidential elections. It's time for solidarity, it's time for unity, in my opinion we need a national consensus," he said.

President Hosni Mubarak was forced out of office after ruling Egypt for nearly 30 years following mass protests. The protests began at Cairo's Tahrir Square Jan 25 and soon thousands of protesters took to the streets in other parts of the country. Tahrir Square became the epicentre of the protests with demonstrators refusing to leave till Mubarak, 82, left. Mubarak stepped down Feb 11 and went into internal exile at the resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh.