Egyptian PM Kandil to remain despite reshuffle

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The Egyptian presidency says Prime Minister Hisham Kandil will remain in his post despite the cabinet reshuffle that will take place next week.

President Mursi’s opponents have been demanding that the cabinet be reshuffled in order to oversee parliamentary elections expected to begin this year.

The president has repeatedly declared his confidence in Kandil, whose sacking is demanded by a coalition of opposition groups, according to AFP.

The Muslim Brotherhood, the movement that propelled Mursi to power last year, has also become increasingly critical of the government in which Kandil is a member.

On Sunday, Egypt’s Justice Minister Ahmed Mekky resigned ahead of the reshuffle in which he was expected to be replaced, state media reported.

According to Justice Ministry spokesman Ahmed Salam, Mekky submitted his resignation to Mursi on Saturday. It followed a protest on Friday by Mursi’s Islamist backers demanding the “purification” of the judiciary.

A bill has been submitted to parliament which critics say would give the government too much control over the make-up of the judiciary.

Mekky, who was appointed in August, had been quoted in local media as saying he would resign if the law was passed. The Islamist-dominated upper house of parliament has yet to vote on the legislation.

The ministries that will be affected in the reshuffle “include some important ones,” stated a senior presidential aid to AFP. “I can’t mention which ones because, as you know, this is a sensitive matter.”

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