Egypt Ruling Council to Form New Government


The head of Egypt's ruling military council announced that he would form a new government within hours, state media reported Sunday.

The announcement by Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi came just hours after that nation's lower parliamentary house suspended its session to protest the civilian government led by Mubarak-era Prime Minister Kamal Ganzouri.

In remarks broadcast on state television, Speaker Saad el-Katatni of the Freedom and Justice Party said that the lower house was suspending its session for a week to protest the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces ignoring calls to dismiss Ganzouri's government.

The Freedom and Justice Party is the political arm of Egypt's long-banned Muslim Brotherhood, which has claimed the lion's share of seats in Egypt's parliament and become a leading force in the country's new politics.

In recent weeks, the group has clashed with the military council and the civilian government the generals installed.

The Brotherhood has as its stated aim the establishment of a more traditional Islamic society in Egypt.

It was officially banned in Egypt under Mubarak but unofficially tolerated, though its members were periodically harassed and jailed.

This month, the Brotherhood announced that the Freedom and Justice Party had nominated 62-year-old multimillionaire businessman Khairat al-Shater as its candidate for president in May, though he was later disqualified.

The group's candidate is now the lesser-known Mohamed Morsi.

Elections are scheduled to start May 23rd.

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