Egyptian judges go on strike over Morsi decree

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi

Egyptian judges have begun a nationwide strike to protest against President Mohamed Morsi’s new decree, which gives him sweeping powers and places him beyond judicial oversight.

During an emergency meeting on Saturday night, the Judges’ Club, a body representing judges across Egypt, denounced Morsi’s presidential decree and announced the immediate “suspension of work in all courts and prosecution administrations,” AFP reported.

Many judges chanted anti-Morsi slogans and called for the “downfall of the regime.” They also demanded that the president rescind the decree.

On November 22, Morsi issued a decree declaring that no judicial body can dissolve Egypt’s Constituent Assembly, which is currently writing a new constitution.

The decree allows the president to take “any decision or measure to protect the revolution.” It also makes decisions and laws issued by the president “final and not subject to appeal.”

Earlier in the day, Egypt’s highest judicial authority, the Supreme Judicial Council, issued a statement saying that the new decree is “an unprecedented attack on the independence of the judiciary and its rulings.”  Continue reading