Egypt’s new military rulers said yesterday they had dissolved parliament and suspended the constitution and would govern only for six months or until elections took place following the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak.
Troops, some wielding sticks, earlier took control of Tahrir (Liberation) Square, the fulcrum of the 18 days of protests that swept Mubarak from power. The military let traffic flow through central Cairo as the army struggled to return life to normal.
The Higher Military Council, which took over after a revolt that changed modern Egyptian history and ended Mubarak’s 30-year rule, promised a referendum on constitutional amendments.
The initial response from opposition figures and protest leaders was overwhelmingly positive. “Victory, victory,” chanted pro-democracy activists in Tahrir Square. “More is needed, more is needed,” others yelled. Egypt’s government now reports to the military as it did to Mubarak.
Police officers, emboldened by Mubarak’s downfall, gathered outside the Interior Ministry to demand higher pay. Warning shots were fired in the air. No one was hurt.
The military is expected to ban meetings by labor unions or professional syndicates today, effectively forbidding strikes, and to tell all Egyptians to get back to work.
Mubarak’s cash coveted
LONDON – A British government minister said yesterday there should be an international approach to dealing with the overseas assets of deposed Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and his family.
A spokesman for Britain’s Serious Fraud Office said the financial crime agency was looking for assets in Britain linked to Mubarak — reported to be worth many millions of dollars and held secretly around the world — in case there was any request to seize them.
Israel treaty safe?
WASHINGTON – Egypt’s envoy to the United States said yesterday his country’s peace treaty with Israel would stand because it benefited Egypt, while Israel’s defense minister said he did not see any risk to their bilateral relationship.
Egypt’s ambassador to the United States, Sameh Shoukry, told ABC’S “This Week” the Israeli peace treaty has been beneficial to his country for 30 years and he expected it to remain in place, as military leaders in Cairo have stated.