World Bulletin / News Desk
Egypt's President Mohamed Morsi will respect a court ruling overturning his decree for the dissolved parliament to convene, his office said amid a power struggle with the military.
"If yesterday's constitutional court ruling prevents parliament from fulfilling its responsibilities, we will respect that because we are a state of the law," the statement said, a day after the court froze Morsi's decree.
"There will be consultations with (political) forces and institutions and the supreme council for legal authorities to pave a suitable way out of this," the statement added.
Last week, Morsi ordered parliament to convene, in defiance of a military decision, to disband the house in line with a court ruling last month before the generals handed power to the president.
Morsi's decree was applauded by supporters who believed the court's decision to disband parliament was political, but it set off a fire storm of criticism from opponents who accused him of overstepping his authority.
According to the country's interim constitution, drafted by the military generals who took charge after president Hosni Mubarak's overthrow early last year, the military assumed the dissolved parliament's powers.
On Sunday, Morsi had ordered parliament back and invited it to convene. Taking its cue from the president, the People's Assembly met on Tuesday.
"We are gathered today to review the court rulings, the ruling of the Supreme Constitutional Court," speaker Saad al-Katatni said.
"I want to stress, we are not contradicting the ruling, but looking at a mechanism for the implementation of the ruling of the respected court. There is no other agenda today," he added.
According to Morsi's decree, new parliamentary elections are to be held after a constituent assembly picked by the legislature finishes a constitution.
But the assembly's fate is in doubt, with the administrative court deciding on Wednesday to look into complaints on the panel's legality next Tuesday rather than in September as had been scheduled, the official MENA news agency reported.
Should the court declare the parliament appointed assembly illegal, the military will appoint a new one, as stipulated in its interim constitution.
Morsi in Saudi Arabia
Morsi arrived in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday for his first foreign trip since taking office and met with King Abdullah, the official SPA news agency said.
No details were given on the subject of the talks between Morsi and Abdullah, but they had been expected to focus on the relations between the oil-rich Gulf kingdom and economically struggling Egypt.
Thousands of protesters rallied Tuesday evening in Tahrir Square, hub of the 2011 revolution, in support of Morsi and chanting "Down with the military" and other slogans hostile to judges and allegedly anti-Islamist TV anchors.
Speaker Katatni said parliament had referred the case invalidating the house to the Court of Cassation.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is due to visit Cairo on Saturday.
Last Mod: 12 Temmuz 2012, 14:17