Friday, 14 December 2012

Egypt: Al-Aujali still not sworn-in as Foreign Minister

Prime Minister Ali Zidan's controversial choice for Foreign Minister, Ali Al-Aujali, may have been cleared by the Integrity Commission in late November, but he has yet to be sworn-in to office.

Unlike his counterparts - Agriculture Minister Ahmed Al-Urfi and Social Affairs Minister Kamla Al-Mazini - who were both cleared by the commission on the same day and who were both sworn-in this week, Al-Aujali has refused to take up his position. Although no official reason has been given for his refusal, the Al-Tadamu press agency reported that he had declared that he would only take part in the ceremony if it could be guaranteed that all members of the Congress would support him.

Given the strength of feeling against Al-Aujali, on account of his high profile diplomatic role during the Qadhafi years, such support was clearly not going to be forthcoming. Indeed, there continue to be many in Congress as well as outside of it, who object strongly to Al-Aujali's being given a cabinet position.

How this issue is to be resolved is still unclear. Meanwhile, Zidan has taken temporary charge of the Foreign Ministry.

For more news and expert analysis about Libya, please see Libya Focus and Libya Politics & Security.

© 2012 Menas Associates

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