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Germany concerned over constitutional changes in Egypt

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Berlin, Germany on 12 June 2017 [Egyptian President Office/Apaimages]
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi in Berlin, Germany on 12 June 2017 [Egyptian President Office/Apaimages]

Germany raised concern over recent constitutional changes in Egypt that would allow President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi to remain in power until 2030, Anadolu reports.

"It is feared that in the course of these constitutional changes the role of the executive and armed forces would be expanded, and a peaceful democratic change in power could be hampered," Christofer Burger, the deputy spokesman for the Foreign Ministry, told a news conference in Berlin.

He reiterated Germany's support for Egypt's stability, but also underlined that it requires opening more space for civil society and political debate in the country.

On Tuesday, Egypt's parliament approved sweeping constitutional amendments which opponents said would reinforce the dominance of military on political affairs and increase executive control over the judiciary.

READ: Egypt's parliament takes steps that could extend Sisi's term

The changes would extend the duration of presidential terms from four to six years, and allow President al-Sisi to eventually run for a third term in office.

Egypt's current constitution, which was ratified in 2014, allowed the president to hold office for a maximum of two four-year terms.

The constitutional change, however, means al-Sisi's second term in office — which he secured in elections last year — will end in 2024, after which he will be allowed to run for a third six-year term ending in 2030.

A nationwide referendum on the proposed constitutional changes would take place from Saturday to Monday.

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EgyptGermanyMiddle EastNews
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