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Egypt's Morsi, SCAF make sweeping security reshuffle

In wake of Sunday's Sinai border attack, President Morsi and military council announce sweeping personnel changes at Egypt's security agencies

Ahram Online , Thursday 9 Aug 2012
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In response to Sunday's Sinai border attacks, President Mohamed Morsi, in conjunction with Egypt's Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF),  announced a reshuffle of Egypt's sensitive security positions on Thursday, including the posts of general intelligence chief, head of the Cairo Security Directorate, head of Egypt's Republican Guards, and North Sinai governor.

The new head of the Republican Guards was the only military post appointed by the presidential office, as all military positions are assigned by the SCAF, which is headed up by Defence Minister Hussein Tantawi.

Ahmed Zaki, who has been head of the Egyptian military's paratroopers division for the past three years, is slated for the position. Egyptian paratroopers have secured Egypt's State Television building since last year's Tahrir Square uprising.

During the tenure of ousted president Hosni Mubarak, the post of head of the Republican Guards had been filled by various military leaders, according to their reputations for efficiency.

Among those who have held the position in the past are Tantawi himself; Magdi Hatata, former chief-of-staff of Egypt's Armed Forces; and Naguib Abdel-Salaam Rashwan, who was dismissed on Wednesday.

Morsi on Wednesday also forced Egypt's general intelligence chief, Mourad Mowafi, into early retirement. Mowafi was replaced by Major General Mohamed Shehata, who will serve as acting intelligence chief in the interim period.

Morsi also appointed former ambassador Mohamed Fathi Refaa El-Tahtawi as presidential chief-of-staff, and Mohamed Osama as head of Cairo's Security Directorate.

Also on Wednesday, Tantawi sacked Major General Hamdi Badeen from the post of commander of Egypt's military police. The president, for his part, is not authorised to sack SCAF members.

There has also been a major reorganisation of police posts at Egypt's Ministry of Interior.

According to the state-run Nile News television channel, Morsi has appointed Major General Maged Mostafa Kamel as the new head of Egypt's Central Security Forces.

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