Military tanks of the Egyptian Armed Forces – Courtesy of the Department of Morale Affairs of the Defense Ministry Military tanks of the Egyptian Armed Forces – Courtesy of the Department of Morale Affairs of the Defense Ministry

Sisi issues law granting select military officials immunity, protection

Thu, Jul. 26, 2018
CAIRO – 26 July 2018: President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi issued Thursday a law giving select military officials diplomatic immunity while travelling abroad along their term as called-up military figures.

The law was approved by the Parliament on July 16. Parliament Speaker Ali Abdel Aal said that military officials stand by people during revolutions, adding that people seek honoring the military personnel. He further explained that people reap the rewards of the revolution thanks to the support of the military officials.

Only eight parliamentarians rejected the law introduced by the Cabinet.

According to the Constitution, the president has the right to issue or reject draft laws. In case the president rejects a draft law, he has to send it back to be reconsidered by the Parliament within 30 days of the Parliament’s notification.

If the president does not send it back within a month to the Parliament, or if at least two thirds of the Parliament members approve it again after it was sent back, the draft law will be issued as a law.

The approved law protects military officials named by a presidential decree from being interrogated or sued for “any action committed” during their tenure or because of their service since the former constitution was suspended in 2013, and until the Parliament elected in 2015 started its mission.

The seven-article law stipulates that the selected former officials will be called up again to serve the Armed Forces for their entire lives. In case the former official was found holding a non-military job, he will be called up after his job is done.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for taking the required procedures to give the select officials diplomatic immunity.

The select officials who had not served as ministers or taken up a higher post before they were called up will be treated as ministers and will subsequently have all ministerial benefits and rights, according to the law.

Moreover, the Egyptian president will determine the other grants given to these officials. In case they have already received grants based on another law, they can still receive the grants given to them based on the newly-approved law.

On July, 3, 2013, President Sisi, the defense minister at the time, announced suspending the 2012 Constitution issued during the Muslim Brotherhood’s rule, and the ousting of the MB affiliated former President Mohamed Morsi to meet the June 30 revolution top demand.

Following the political turmoil caused by Morsi supporters especially before the dispersal of their mass sit-ins in Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Al-Nahda squares, Sisi resigned from his post as the defense minister and ran for president.

In January 2016, the current Parliament started its first session about two months after it was elected, Abdel Aal was chosen by the members as the Parliament speaker.

Additional reporting by Amr Mohamed Kandil
 
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