Egyptian opposition supporters are planning mass rallies and strikes on December 4 in protest of a draft new constitution and President Muhammad Morsi’s decree granting himself nearly unrestricted powers.
The opposition has reacted furiously to Morsi’s announcement that a referendum will be held December 15 on the draft constitution that was hurriedly approved last week by an assembly dominated by Morsi’s Islamist allies.
The draft has been criticized for failing to defend the rights of women and minority groups.
Morsi has said the constitution needs to be ratified before he can rescind his November 22 decree that placed his decisions above any oversight, including by courts.
In a signal of cooperation with the president, Egypt's highest judicial authority said on December 3 that it would assign judges to oversee the constitutional referendum, overriding calls for a boycott.
Based on reporting by AP and AFP