World Bulletin / News Desk
The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) on Monday mandated Egyptian army chief and defense minister Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi to run for president, the official news agency MENA reported.
The decision came during a meeting of SCAF to discuss "popular demands" for al-Sisi to content the upcoming presidential elections.
A well-placed source earlier told Anadolu Agency that SCAF had approved al-Sisi's candidacy and congratulated him on his recent promotion to the rank of field marshal.
The military council also agreed to appoint Army Chief-of-Staff Sedki Sobhi as the country's next defense minister, the source said.
Three candidates have been fielded for the post of army chief-of-staff – Second Army Commander Ahmed Wasfi, Head of the Army Operations Room Mohsen al-Shazli, and Commander of Military Central Command Tawhid Tawfiq, the source said.
Following the meeting, al-Sisi informed interim President Adly Mansour of his final decision to resign from the post of defense minister in order to run for president.
According to the source, al-Sisi will officially announce his candidacy for top office within hours.
On Saturday, thousands of Egyptians descended on Cairo's iconic Tahrir Square – both to mark the third anniversary of the January 25 uprising that swept autocratic president Hosni Mubarak from power in 2011 and urge the top general to run for president.
On Sunday, Egypt's interim president Adly Mansour officially amended an army-imposed transitional roadmap to allow upcoming presidential elections to precede parliamentary polls.
The roadmap, unveiled in the immediate wake of the army's July ouster of president Mohamed Morsi, had initially stipulated that parliamentary polls be held before presidential elections, following the endorsement of a new constitution.
Al-Sisi is widely perceived as the main architect of last July's ouster of Morsi – Egypt's first freely elected president – by the army.
Last Mod: 27 Ocak 2014, 18:26