Four ministers, five MPs resign in protest against government

Four ministers resigned from the Egyptian Cabinet Monday in protest against perceived mishandling of the current political stand-off in the country by President Mohamed Morsy's government, state-run news agency MENA reported, quoting informed sources.

Minister of State for Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Hatem Begato, Minister of Communications Atef Helmy, Minister of Environment Khaled Fahmy and Tourism Minister Hesham Zazou all resigned, Al-Masry Al-Youm reported Monday.

One source said that some of the outgoing ministers announced their intention to leave the Cabinet and join protests demanding Morsy step down, paving the way for early presidential elections.

The source added that the ministers intend to issue a statement to the Egyptian people formally announcing their resignations and the reasons behind them.

Five secular Shura Council MPs also tendered official resignations on Monday to protest what they referred to as the “current conditions in the country."

The walk-out comes amid rising protests demanding early presidential elections and the removal of President Mohamed Morsy.

Fifteen others had submitted their resignations two days ago in objection to the president’s speech on Wednesday which, they said, failed to provide any solutions for the current political crisis.

The five parliamentarians who declared resignation on Monday have been named as Magdy al-Maasarawy, Gamil Halim, Sameh Fawzy, Nadia Henry and Farid al-Bayyad.

According to the Constitution approved last December, the council, Egypt’s upper house, holds temporary legislative powers until the election of the lower House of Representatives.

Egypt witnessed mass protests on Sunday as millions across the country rallied against the Muslim Brotherhood-led administration. Morsy's presidency has not responded to protesters' demands, meanwhile offering a weak call for national dialogue through a series of press conferences since Sunday afternoon.

Edited translation from MENA

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