The standoff between the Egyptian army and the Muslim Brotherhoods had a new twist Tuesday when Egypt's High Constitutional Court decided to suspend the decree of President Mohamed Morsi, who ordered the parliament to reconvene. "The Court decided to suspend the president's decision to convene the parliament," said Judge Maher el Beheiry, head of the High Court.
This decision comes as the People's Assembly, the lower house of Egyptian Parliament, met Tuesday morning.
The High Constitutional Court invalidated on June 14 third of the seats in the People's Assembly, saying the electoral law was unconstitutional. This judgment led the members of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), in power since the downfall of President Hosni Mubarak in 2011, to dissolve the parliament two days later.
The new Egyptian president however reversed that ruling and ordered Sunday the parliament to meet again until a new assembly is elected. The decision Tuesday by the High Court, all of which has been published by the official news agency, said its two verdicts are final, and can not be appealed. It stressed that both of them needed to be respected by "all state authorities and everyone else".
The High Court states that its ruling of June 14 cancels the election of "the whole (lower house) of Parliament", which is based on unconstitutional laws. The parliament is "declared void as of that date by the power of the law, without any need to take another step", it read.
It also describes the decision by Mohamed Morsi to convene parliament as aimed to "prevent the application of the previous verdict of the Constitutional Court
One of the spokesmen of the Muslim Brotherhoods, Mahmoud Ghozlan, said the recent ruling was linked to the army. "This is part of a power struggle between the military council and the president who represents the people, and during which the military council is using the law and justice to impose its will," he said.