Egypt's Military Grabs Power After Election

As election results come in, military takes power from presidency
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 18, 2012 12:02 AM CDT
Updated Jun 18, 2012 7:57 AM CDT
Egypt's Military Grabs Power as Islamist Declares Win
Supporters of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Mursi celebrate after the announcement of election results in Cairo last night.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Egypt was thrown into turmoil yesterday, after Egypt's military issued a decree taking most powers away from the country's newly elected president. Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi claimed victory over Ahmed Shafiq, Hosni Mubarak's last prime minister, in the country's first free presidential election, but just 20 minutes later the military issued a decree claiming sweeping powers, the Washington Post reports. "Egypt has completely left the realm of the Arab Spring and entered the realm of military dictatorship," one human rights activist said. "This is worse than our worst fears."

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Today the military promised to hold a ceremony handing power to the elected president later this month, the BBC reports, but it did not renounce any of its new powers, which include control of Egypt's budget and constitution, as well as lifetime terms for the military's ruling council. The Brotherhood says it does not recognize the military's constitution, or the dissolution of parliament last week. After declaring victory, Morsi said he would rule as president of all Egyptians and would not "seek revenge or settle scores," Reuters reports. Final official election results are due Thursday and Shafiq's campaign has challenged the Brotherhood's victory, accusing it of "deceiving the people." (Read more Egyptian military stories.)

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