Egypt’s Justice Ministry warned Wednesday that the military has broad powers to arrest civilians in what appeared to be preparations for protests ahead of two critical court decisions expected today. The announcement was the first such warning since the fall of former President Hosni Mubarak 16 months ago and came one day before the Supreme Constitutional Court was expected to issue rulings that could dissolve Egypt’s first democratically elected Parliament and cancel this weekend’s presidential runoff election. Some interpreted the decree as foreshadowing the military’s plan to extend its rule past July 1, when the new president is supposed to take over. Others said they believed Egypt was now under martial law.
15 dead in tribal clashes
Tribal clashes in western and southern Libya left at least 15 people dead over a 48-hour span, the state news agency reported Wednesday, as old grievances between Libyan tribes and cities resurface in the absence of strong leadership in post-revolution Libya. The violence led transitional ruler Mustafa Abdul-Jalil to appeal to Libyans in a televised speech to lay down their arms and unite before next month’s election, when Libyans choose a 200-member assembly to form a government and oversee writing of a constitution. The election is supposed to be a milestone on the path to democratic rule after the overthrow last year of Moammar Gadhafi.
Canadian ordered held
A Berlin court has ordered that the Canadian suspect in the slaying and dismembering of a Chinese student in Montreal be held in pre-extradition custody as his likely return to Canada edges closer, authorities said Wednesday. Berlin state court spokesman Tobias Kaehne said the court decided at the end of last week that there was enough evidence to keep suspect Luka Rocco Magnotta behind bars pending extradition. Magnotta, 29, a porn actor, is suspected of killing and dismembering student Jun Lin before sending some of his body parts to Canadian political parties and schools.
Compiled from wire reports.