June 19, 2012 / 2:47 PM / 5 years ago

Factbox: Egypt's new constitutional decree

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt’s ruling generals issued a decree on Sunday that will give the newly elected president the power to appoint a cabinet, but legislative powers will for now go back to the army.

Here are articles from the new decree that added several amendments to an interim constitution setting out how Egypt has been run since Hosni Mubarak was swept from power in 2011.

* The ruling military council (SCAF) retains powers to legislate until a new parliament is elected.

* SCAF is responsible for deciding on all matters related to the armed forces. The head of SCAF, rather than the new president, will be the head of the armed forces until a new constitution is written.

* The president can only declare war with SCAF’s approval.

* If the assembly tasked with writing a new constitution faces any hurdles in completing its job, SCAF has one week to form another assembly that represents “all forces in society”. The new assembly will have a maximum of three months to complete its role. The decree did not explain under what circumstances the previous assembly would be deemed to have failed.

* The constitution will be put to a referendum within 15 days of completion.

* Parliamentary elections will be held within a month of the approval of a new constitution.

* The president or the head of SCAF or the prime minister or the head of the judicial authorities council or five members of the constituent assembly hold veto rights over any article drafted by the body drafting the constitution. They can object to an article if it contradicts “the goals of the revolution or its fundamental principles”. They may also object if drafted articles contradict principles of past constitutions.

* The aforementioned parties will ask for a review of any contested articles within 15 days.

* If the constituent assembly disagrees with the veto and the debate continues, either party can take the article to the Supreme Constitutional Court for a ruling. That ruling must be issued within seven days. The court verdict is binding.

* The decree also substituted an article in a previous constitutional decree which set out the rules for parliamentary elections. The last article had said the parliamentary vote would be governed by a two-thirds proportional party list system and one-third allocated for independents - a system that was ruled unconstitutional last week. The new article said that parliamentary elections would be governed by “whatever system” is decided upon, without giving details.

* The president can call on the military to deal with domestic “disturbances” after the approval of SCAF. The army can be called on by the president to protect vital state facilities and participate in keeping public security.

* In the case that parliament is dissolved, which it was by court order only days before the presidential run-off, the new president takes the oath of office in front of the Supreme Constitutional Court.

Writing by Dina Zayed; Editing by Louise Ireland

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