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The new defense minister will be nominated by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, newly-appointed Prime Minister Hesham Qandil told privately-owned satellite channel CBC.
“The military council will nominate the new defense minister. If [Field Marshal Hussein] Tantawi is nominated, he will be appointed,” Qandil said. Tantawi, the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, has been defense minister since 1991.
Qandil, a former irrigation minister, called the SCAF’s role in the revolution patriotic.
He declined to give details about the timeline for the final formation of the new cabinet, saying that Egypt is full of efficient people and that they will work on achieving Egyptians’ demands.
He also denied news about appointing Khairat al-Shater, deputy supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, as deputy prime minister. “This is untrue. I don’t know who spread this news and who its source is. No one talked to me about this,” he said.
Qandil said the new cabinet’s priorities were facing security challenges and achieving the revolution’s goals.
“We also seek to achieve the 100-day program of President Mohamed Morsy,” he added.
During a talk show appearance last month on the same channel, SCAF member Major General Mohamed al-Assar said that Tantawi would maintain his position in the next cabinet as defense minister and SCAF head.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm