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What was billed as an anticipated showdown between the Muslim Brotherhood and the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces over the fate of Parliament has ended anticlimacticallywith today’s papers calling in the result: Morsy backed down.
“Morsy calms down” is the headline in private daily Al-Shorouk, with the news that presidential spokesperson Yasser Ali emphasized President Mohamed Morsy’s respect for the judiciary and its rulings. Morsy had issued a decree earlier in the week reconvening the disbanded lower house of Parliament, prompting the Supreme Constitutional Court to issues its own order blocking his.
And that’s where it seems to have ended. Parliament convened in a Tuesday session, during which People's Assembly Speaker Saad al-Katatny also iterated the assembly’s respect for the law and said the body would not convene until a ruling from the Court of Cassation, to which it was referring the matter, independent Al-Tahrir newspaper reports.
The newspaper then quotes the spokesperson and deputy head of the Supreme Constitutional Court Maher Samy as saying that referring the matter to the Court of Cassation is the wrong move. He says the court has the jurisdiction to review membership issues regarding the assembly, but when the law upon which the elections were based is deemed unconstitutional, "that’s a different story."
Privately owned Al-Watan newspaper leads with coverage of the parliamentary impasse. On its front page is also another story about a meeting Morsy held with prominent Egyptian businessmen — some of them with ties to the defunct National Democratic Party — who reportedly warned him that the power struggle with the SCAF would cause investors to steer clear of Egypt.
Just to drive that point home, the newspaper doesn’t stop there, also managing to fit on its front page a story under the headline “The repercussions of Morsy’s earthquake … England, France, Germany and China cancel tourist reservations.” The body of the article goes on to elaborate that tourism companies in the aforementioned countries cancelled their September and October bookings due to Morsy’s temerity in passing a presidential decree about Parliament.
That’s the end of that then, and Morsy jetted off to Saudi Arabia for his first official state visit. The Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice newspaper has a two-page spread on his first official state visit under the headline that it confirmed the “historic ties” between the two countries.
The newspaper reports that four issues topped Morsy's agenda during meetings with his Saudi counterparts: Egyptian labor in the kingdom, the Syrian revolution, Gulf security and the economy. There is also mention of Ahmed al-Gizawy, the Egyptian lawyer potentially facing a death sentence in Saudi’s jails. His arrest on drug allegations in April spurred protests in Egypt that prompted many Brotherhood members to travel to the kingdom to grovel for the return of the Saudi ambassador.
State-run Al-Gomhurriya reports that the SCAF has stated it will remain loyal to legitimacy, and that the current impasse is merely a bump in the road that will pass. These were comments made by SCAF head Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi during a ceremony for the transfer of command of the Central Military Zone, which was passed from Hassan al-Roweiny — well known now for his admission of spreading rumors in Tahrir Square during the revolution — to Tawhid Tawfik.
Al-Gomhurriya is one of the few newspapers to talk about Morsy’s potential new cabinet, which the paper reports is to be announced within hours. It claims that the Freedom and Justice Party will hold 35 percent of the posts and that there is a disagreement with the Salafi Nour Party over some of the appointments, specifically the education, health and agriculture ministers. The heads of the three “sovereign” ministries, defense, interior and justice, are to be chosen in consultation with the ministries themselves, surely setting a new precedent in the new Egypt.
Al-Ahram: Daily, state-run, largest distribution in Egypt
Al-Akhbar: Daily, state-run, second to Al-Ahram in institutional size
Al-Gomhurriya: Daily, state-run
Rose al-Youssef: Daily, state-run
Al-Dostour: Daily, privately owned
Al-Shorouk: Daily, privately owned
Al-Watan: Daily, privately owned
Al-Wafd: Daily, published by the liberal Wafd Party
Youm7: Daily, privately owned
Al-Tahrir: Daily, privately owned
Freedom and Justice: Daily, published by the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party
Sawt al-Umma: Weekly, privately owned
Al-Arabi: Weekly, published by the Nasserist Party
Al-Nour: Official paper of the Salafi Nour Party