Constitutional Fundamentals of Actions by Egyptian Defense Minister on July 3rd, 2013: Comparative Analysis

Kristina Kenstavičienė

Abstract


Actions by Egyptian Defense Minister on July 3rd, 2013 raised a question on what sort of means secure democratic military control and whether a democratic state can limit and control the use of force in a democratic manner. For this reason, in comparison with constitutional provisions of other states that embody different forms of government, this article analyses the constitutional status of a state leader as a head of military forces that was infixed in the Constitution of the Arab Republic of Egypt of December 26th, 2012, and also what constitutional fundamentals existed for Egyptian Defense Minister to perform actions on July 3rd, 2013, or to prevent these actions from materializing.
The process that at the moment is in action in Egypt is an important test for democracy, which up until now the state has been having trouble to pass. When looking at the state government system provisioned by the Constitution of the Arab Republic of Egypt of December 26th, 2012, it becomes clear that the Constitution lacks more visible balance of power, which in turn creates the lack of democracy. Various military councils and military forces are equal to other three state powers (legislative, executive and judicial), but in a democratic country, military institutions of the state cannot be ascribed to state government institutions and furthermore have a priority over them. On the contrary, military state institutions must be liable to civil state institutions and must be controlled by them, and their decisions must be based on decisions by civil state institutions.
Actions by Egyptian Defense Minister on July 3rd, 2013 were performed in breach of constitutional provisions that were set by the nation to live in accordance with, and this Constitution was validated in a referendum. According to the Constitution, Defense Minister is not the Protector of the Constitution; furthermore, no right is provisioned for him to terminate the validity of the Constitution. The Egyptian Constitution does not provide the Defense Minister with a right to dismiss the President of the Republic from the office and to appoint a constitutional jurisdiction judge to a temporary President office. What is more, it was possible to solve a political crisis apparent in a country and to avoid breaches of the Constitution by implementing other constitutional means (noconfidence, impeachment or election institutions).

Keywords


state leader as a head of military forces; defense minister; military leader; Constitution

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13165/SMS-14-6-1-07

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"Societal studies" ISSN online 2029-2244 / ISSN print 2029-2236