Egypt's army dissolves parliament, suspends constitution

Written by: Bno
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CAIRO: Egypt's new military authorities on Sunday said they are dissolving parliament and suspending the constitution, two days after President Hosni Mubarak was ousted after 18 days of mass protests, according to a statement by the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces on state TV.

The military council will run the country temporarily for six months or until elections are held. It will also appoint a committee to amend the constitution, adding that the public will then get to vote on the changes. The council can issue new laws during the transition period, according to the statement.

Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq said shortly before the military statement that the government is now reporting to the military high command in the same way it reported to Mubarak before he resigned, CNN reported.

Shafiq added that the restoration of security and normal life is the government's priority and pledged to fight corruption in his first comments to the press since Mubarak stepped down.

Earlier Sunday, scuffles broke out after troops began to clear protesters from Tahrir Square. Some Egyptians have vowed to keep protesting until a civilian government is established.

Crowds of uniformed police officers also joined demonstrations in Cairo on Sunday, with protesters carrying officers on their shoulders amid cheers of "police and people are one," CNN reported. Several hundred were protesting at the Ministry of the Interior, some in uniform and some in plain clothes.

Normality began to return to the country on the first regular work day without Mubarak as president. Traffic in the area flowed freely and the majority of shops around Tahrir were open.

On Saturday, a spokesman for the Armed Forces Supreme Council said the current government would remain in place until a new one could be formed. Several high-ranking government officials:including the former prime minister and interior minister: were facing lawsuits and were barred from traveling out of the country, state television reported, citing a judiciary source.

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak resigned from the presidency on Friday after weeks of massive anti-government protests, an announcement hailed by millions around the country and across the world. The resignation of Mubarak is seen as a historic change in Egypt and the Middle East, and ends his 30-year rule. Clashes between protesters and security forces killed as many as 300 people and injured thousands more.

(Copyright 2011 by BNO News B.V. All rights reserved. )

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