Egypt's new president ordered the dissolved Islamist-led parliament on Sunday to reconvene until a new one was elected, challenging the authority of the military generals who had dismissed the assembly based on a court ruling.
President Mohamed Morsy was handed power on 30 June by the generals who had been in charge since Hosni Mubarak was ousted last year. But, shortly before handing over, the army curbed some presidential powers and gave itself a legislative role.
Morsy's decision removes those legislative powers from the army and returns them to a parliament dominated by the party of Morsy's Muslim Brotherhood and its allies, analysts said.
The state news agency MENA said the military council had held an emergency session to discuss the decree. A member of the council, who declined to be identified, told Reuters the generals had not been given prior warning of Morsy's decision.
Morsy also called for an early vote once a new constitution was drawn up. That suggested a possible compromise by indicating that the assembly, criticized by some for a poor initial performance, would not serve a full four-year term.
"President Mohamed Morsy ordered the reconvening of the elected parliament to hold sessions," according to a presidential statement read out by Morsy's aide Yasser Ali.
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