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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Egypt’s President Mohamed Morsy sets referendum on the Constitution’s draft amid the massive protests and marches of Islamists

Mohamed Morsy, Egypt's President

After Egyptian Constituent Assembly has been working during 16 hours and has finally voted for the Constitutions draft and approved it the document was sent to Egypt’s President Mohamed Morsy, as it was announced earlier. Despite the fact that nearly two thirds of the current Constituent Assembly, predominantly secularists, liberal and Christian, have withdrawn, and the Assembly is strongly dominated by Islamists and doesn’t represent the whole spectrum of Egyptian society the draft of the future Constitution was approved. It was sent to Mohamed Morsy on Saturday, 1 December, right on the eve of the High Constitutional Court session which could possibly dissolve the Constituent Assembly.

Mohamed Morsy has made an official speech regarding the issue of the draft of the Constitution and he hailed the document stressing this Constitution represents all the Egyptians and can protect their freedoms and rights. He also added the draft is balanced and protects the gains of January 25 Revolution. Mr.Morsy congratulated and saluted all the Egyptian citizens and set the date for the national referendum to vote for the draft of the Constitution. The national referendum was set on 15 December 2012. If the Constitution will be approved after this referendum, the parliamentary elections should be held within 60 days, and after it will be elected, the controversial Constitutional Declaration issued by Mr. Morsy on 22 November will lose its power, according to the official statements.



Thus, the Constituent Assembly has voted for all 234 articles of the future Constitution, and the text of it will be available for Egyptians to read and study it before the referendum.

Meanwhile, secularists and liberals strongly oppose this Constitution as it fails to represent all the citizens of Egypt and is in favor of one faction of society only. Secularists and liberals have stepped out of the Assembly and didn’t’ take part in the voting and approving of the current draft.

Egyptians are protesting against the new Constitution
In addition to that Egypt faces the wave of massive protests nationwide against the latest Mr. Morsy’s decree and the draft of the Constitution as well. The people have been protesting in Cairo’s Tahrir Square and in the main squares of other Egyptian cities during more than a week and they refuse to accept the Constitutionals Declaration of Morsy and the draft of the Constitution.

The oppositional forces see it as a threat to democracy and freedoms and rights of the citizens and accuse the Islamists and Mohamed Morsy, who hails from Muslim Brotherhood, of hijacking the Revolution and the process of the writing of Egypt’s new Constitution which will define the future development of Egypt.

Protesters are calling for bringing down the dictatorial regime of Mohamed Morsy and Muslim Brotherhood and totally rejecting the draft of the Constitution. Prominent oppositional leaders, such as Mohamed ElBaradei, Hamdeen Sabbahy and others, have created the National Salvation Front to fights against such undemocratic decisions and to protect the goals and achievements of the Revolution. They strongly condemn the recent moves and decisions of Mr. Morsy stressing that such decisions are causing the deeper divisions within the society and could lead to more serious conflicts as the situation is already very tense.

Some of the oppositional activists are calling for national disobedience and also propose to boycott the upcoming referendum of the draft of the Constitution. Other activists and prominent figures are thinking that it is important to unite the powers now and do not allow such a Constitution to be put on referendum.

Pro-Morsy rally held in Cairo
Meanwhile the massive Islamist rally was held today in Cairo in support of Egypt’s President Mohamed Morsy and his Constitutional Decree. Morsy supporters have gathered in Giza, changing their location from the earlier planned Tahrir to Giza in order to avoid the possible clashes, as Tahrir Square is occupied by anti-Morsy protesters who are holding their sit-ins there and continue the protests.

According to the reports nearly 100,000 demonstrators have gathered today to express their support of Morsy’s Constitutional Declaration and of the draft of the Constitution. The protesters have been chanting for Morsy and demanding the implementation of Islamic Law in Egypt. Some of the demonstrators even accused the oppositional protesters of being against Islam and Egypt’s Revolution. There were a lot of Salafi among the demonstrators, and some prominent preachers were also among them. But there was no strong presence of the major Islamist power in Egypt, Muslim Brotherhood.

After Morsy’s announcement of the timetable for the referendum on the draft of the Constitution the oppositional protesters still remain in the square stressing they will not leave until such undemocratic decision will not be cancelled. Islamist forces however support the current draft of the Constitution.