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August 2, 2015 / 17 Av, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘law’

House Foreign Affairs Comm Chair: ‘No Money, No Political Support for PA’

Sunday, December 2nd, 2012

The Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), firmly denounced  the decision made the United Nations General Assembly to elevate the status of  “Palestine” (the Palestine Liberation Organization) to non-member observer state at the UN.

In a statement issued on the day of the vote, Nov 29, Cong. Ros-Lehtinen said that Mahmoud Abbas is not a partner for peace and that his action at the U.N. will “push peace with Israel even further away.”

The Florida Congresswoman said that the decision by Abbas to ignore the U.S.’s strongly-worded and repeatedly given advice that he not attempt to achieve unilateral goals through the U.N. rather than through negotiations with Israel, made “crystal clear” that Abbas and his compatriots “do not value their relationship with the U.S.”

In addition to withholding all U.S. funds for “Palestine” the committee chair also intends to pull U.S. funding for any U.N. agencies that grant membership to “Palestine,” as is required under U.S. law.

Cong. Doug Lamborn (CO-5), co-chair of the Republican Israel Caucus and the Israel Allies Caucus also issued a statement through email denouncing the U.N. shenanigans.  He said that the action taken by Abbas could, “inflame tensions in the region and ultimately hurt their efforts to achieve statehood and a lasting peace.”

Lamborn also called for the cutting off of foreign aid to the Palestinian Authority as the result of its effort to gain statehood outside of direct negotiations with Israel.” 

Although the U.S. administration strongly opposed and voted against this measure at the U.N., Ros-Lehtinen also included a warning to the U.S. administration in her statement.

She said, “if the Administration again seeks to gut U.S. law and keep funding those reckless UN agencies, Congress’ response must be simple: No.”

Last year Abbas sought to gain full United Nations membership through the UN Security Council.  That gambit was rebuffed by a threat by the U.S. to veto any such motion.  However, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization went ahead and recognized “Palestine” as a UNESCO state member.  As a result of that decision, and in compliance with U.S. law, Congress cut UNESCO’s funding. However, after heavy congressional lobbying by the administration, the funding was restored in late April of this year through the implementation of a waiver.

Text of Egyptian Constitution Draft

Saturday, December 1st, 2012

Parts of Egypt’s proposed constitution have been translated by Egypt Independent. While quite long, the following is not the complete translation.

Egypt Independent will be publishing a more complete version of the draft on Sunday and you will be able to read it there.



We, the people of Egypt,
In the name of God and with the assistance of God,
declare this to be

Egypt’s Constitution and the document of the pioneering, peaceful revolution, which was started by Egypt’s promising youth, protected by the Armed Forces, championed by the patient Egyptians who gathered in Tahrir Square on 25 January 2011 to assert their rejection of all forms of injustice, oppression, tyranny, plunder and monopoly, to fully proclaim their rights to a decent life, to freedom, to social justice and human dignity — all rights granted by God before being prescribed in constitutions and universal declarations of human rights;

A promise of a new dawn worthy of Egypt’s history and civilization, the same civilization that gave humanity the first alphabet, that opened the way to monotheism and the knowledge of the Creator, adorned the pages of history with creativity, established the oldest state on the banks of the timeless Nile, while from the beginning understanding the meaning of identity, and embodying the values of citizenship.

The great Egyptian people have regained their freedom and dignity, and here they are now, going forth toward a new tomorrow, more firmly joined to the historical moment, with greater faith in their abilities and their fundamental principles, more determined to achieve the objectives of their peaceful revolution, optimistic about a safe future under the rubric of a free country, ready for hard work and for active participation in the progress of human civilization.

Having restored a fresh spirit of unity between Egyptians, men and women, the people’s revolution continues toward building a modern democratic state, while preserving Egypt’s spiritual and social values, its rich and unique constituents, and building on the integral fundamentals expressed in the following principles:

One —
Sovereignty is for the people, the sole bearer of the right to set up the authorities, which derive their legitimacy from the people, are subject to the people’s control, are bound by the limits of their mandates and constitutional responsibilities, and are committed to protecting public funds, maintaining the State’s resources, and establishing the fundamentals of justice in the distribution thereof. The authorities shall uphold the principle that positions of public service amount to responsibilities and mandates, not to rights or privileges, and that their holders work to serve the interests of the citizens.

Two —
Democracy is the system of government established and expanding the grounds for peaceful transfer of power, supporting political pluralism, ensuring fair elections and the people’s contribution in the decision-making process.

Three —
The freedom of citizens shall be upheld in all aspects of life, freedom of opinion and expression, and freedom in housing, property and travel, out of full belief in such freedom as a divine principle laid down by the Creator in the motion of the universe. God has created humans free and gifted them with the highest degree of refinement, intelligence and wisdom.

Four —
Equality before the law and equal opportunities for all citizens, men and women, without discrimination or nepotism, especially in the areas of education, employment, political rights, and economic and social rights, prioritizing the advancement of social justice.

Five —
The rule of law is the basis of government. The freedom of individuals and the legitimacy of state authorities are ensured by the submission of the State and of individuals to the rule of law and the State’s commitment to the independence of the judiciary. The Egyptian judiciary shall carry out its mission in defending the constitution, upholding justice and protecting rights and freedoms.

Six —
Respect for the individual, the cornerstone of the nation, whose dignity is a natural extension of national pride. Further, there is no dignity for a country in which women are not honored. Women are the sisters of men and hold the fort of motherhood; they are half of society and partners in all national gains and responsibilities.

Seven —
Upholding national unity is an obligation of state and society, for it forms the basis of stability and national cohesion, the cornerstone of building a modern Egypt and of the path to progress and development. To that end, the values of tolerance and moderation shall be spread, and the rights and freedoms of all citizens shall be protected without discrimination.

Eight —
Defending the land is a duty and an honor in the service of which human resources and funds shall be mobilized. As the country’s protective shield, the Armed Forces have a special place in the minds of the Egyptian people. The Armed Forces form a professional and neutral national institution that does not interfere in political affairs. No other group is allowed to form military or paramilitary structures or engage in activities of military character.

Nine —
Security is a great blessing. The role of security forces is to protect individuals and enforce the measures of justice. There can be no justice without protection, and no protection without security institutions capable of enforcing the state’s authority within a framework of respect for the rule of law and human dignity.

Ten —
Peace based on justice for the whole world, political and social progress for all peoples. Independent national development can only occur when the creative potential of the Egyptian people is unleashed, recalling their contribution to the advancement of civilization, for themselves and for humanity as a whole.

Eleven —
Arab unity is a call of history and of the future, and a demand of destiny that can only materialize under the protection of an Arab nation capable of warding off any threat, regardless of its source and the pretexts supporting it. Such unity is to be reinforced through the integration and brotherhood with countries of the Nile Valley and of the Muslim world, both a natural extension borne out of the distinctiveness of Egypt’s position on the global map.

Twelve —
Emphasizing Egypt’s pioneering intellectual and cultural role in the whole world and in the region, embodied by a soft power which has brought forth, and still does, icons of Egyptian thought, art and creativity. Creative freedom and the safety of thinkers shall be ensured, and the state’s responsibility for the supporting institutions maintained: universities, science centers, linguistic and research centers, the press, the arts, literature and mass media, the national church and Al-Azhar, with its history as a mainstay of national identity, the Arabic language and Islamic Sharia, and as a beacon for moderate enlightened thought.

We, the people of Egypt,
Out of faith in God and His heavenly messages,
In recognition of the right of the country and the nation,
With awareness of our responsibilities toward the nation and humanity,

Pledge to stay committed to the principles laid out in this Preamble, which we hold to be an integral part of this Constitution that we accept and grant to ourselves, affirming our determination to uphold and defend it, and asserting that it shall be respected by all.


Chapter One: Political principles

Article 1

The Arab Republic of Egypt is an independent sovereign state, united and indivisible, its system democratic.
The Egyptian people are part of the Arab and Islamic nations, proud of belonging to the Nile Valley and Africa and of its Asian reach, a positive participant in human civilization.

Article 2
Islam is the religion of the state and Arabic its official language. Principles of Islamic Sharia are the principal source of legislation.

Article 3

The canon principles of Egyptian Christians and Jews are the main source of legislation for their personal status laws, religious affairs, and the selection of their spiritual leaders.

Article 4

Al-Azhar is an encompassing independent Islamic institution, with exclusive autonomy over its own affairs, responsible for preaching Islam, theology and the Arabic language in Egypt and the world. Al-Azhar Senior Scholars are to be consulted in matters pertaining to Islamic law.

The post of Al-Azhar Grand Sheikh is independent and cannot be dismissed. The method of appointing the Grand Sheikh from among members of the Senior Scholars is to be determined by law.

The State shall ensure sufficient funds for Al-Azhar to achieve its objectives.

All of the above is subject to law regulations.

Article 5

Sovereignty is for the people alone and they are the source of authority. The people shall exercise and protect this sovereignty, and safeguard national unity in the manner specified in the Constitution.

Article 6

The political system is based on the principles of democracy and shura (counsel), citizenship (under which all citizens are equal in rights and duties), multi-party pluralism, peaceful transfer of power, separation of powers and the balance between them, the rule of law, and respect for human rights and freedoms; all as elaborated in the Constitution.

No political party shall be formed that discriminates on the basis of gender, origin or religion.

Article 7

Defense of the motherland and its soil is a sacred duty, and conscription is obligatory in accordance with the law.

Chapter Two: Social and ethical principles

Article 8

The State guarantees the means to achieve justice, equality and freedom, and is committed to facilitating the channels of social charity and solidarity between the members of society, and to ensure the protection of persons and property, and to working toward providing for all citizens; all within the context of the law.

Article 9

The State shall ensure safety, security and equal opportunities for all citizens without discrimination.

Article 10
The family is the basis of the society and is founded on religion, morality and patriotism.

The State is keen to preserve the genuine character of the Egyptian family, its cohesion and stability, and to protect its moral values, all as regulated by law.

The State shall ensure maternal and child health services free of charge, and enable the reconciliation between the duties of a woman toward her family and her work.

The State shall provide special care and protection to female breadwinners, divorced women and widows.

Article 11
The State shall safeguard ethics, public morality and public order, and foster a high level of education and of religious and patriotic values, scientific thinking, Arab culture, and the historical and cultural heritage of the people; all as shall be regulated by law.

Article 12

The State shall safeguard the cultural and linguistic constituents of society, and foster the Arabization of education, science and knowledge.

Article 13

The institution of civil titles shall be prohibited.

Chapter Three: Economic Principles

Article 14
National economy shall be organized in accordance with a comprehensive, constant development plan, ensuring the increase of national income, enhancement of standard of living, elimination of poverty and unemployment, increase of work opportunities, and increase of production.

The development plan shall establish social justice and solidarity, ensure equitable distribution, protect consumer rights, and safeguard the rights of workers, dividing development costs between capital and labor and sharing the revenues justly.

Wages shall be linked to production, bridging income gaps and establishing a minimum wage that would guarantee decent living standards for all citizens, and a maximum wage in civil service positions with exemptions regulated by law.

Article 15
Agriculture is an essential asset of the national economy. The State shall protect and increase farmland, work on the development of crop and plant varieties, develop and protect animal breeds and fisheries, achieve food security, provide the requirements of agricultural production, its good management and marketing, and support agricultural industries.

The law regulates the use of land, in such a way as to achieve social justice, and protect farmers and agricultural laborer from exploitation.

Article 16
The State is committed to the development of the countryside and the desert, working to raise the standard of living of the farmers and the people of the desert.

Article 17

Industry is an essential asset of the national economy. The State shall protect strategic industries, support industrial development, and import new technologies and their applications.

The State shall foster small handicraft industries.

Article 18
The natural resources of the State belong to the people, who have a right to their revenues. The State is committed to preserving such resources for future generations and putting them to good use.

State property is not to be disposed of. The franchise to use, or the commitment to a public utility, can only be granted according to legal regulations.
All money with no owner belongs to the State.

Article 19

The Nile River and water resources are a national wealth. The State is committed to maintaining and developing them, and preventing abuse. The use of such resources shall be regulated by law.

Article 20

The State shall protect its coasts, seas, waterways and lakes, maintain monuments and nature reserves, and remove any encroachments.

Article 21

The State guarantees and protects legitimate ownership of all kinds of public, cooperative and private property and endowments, as shall be regulated by law.

Article 22
Public funds are inviolable. It is a national duty of the State and society to safeguard them.

Article 23
The State shall support cooperatives in all forms and ensure their independence.

Article 24
Private property is inviolable and has a function in the service of national economy without deviation or monopoly. The right of inheritance shall be safeguarded. Private property may not be placed under sequestration except in cases specified by law, and with a court order. Ownership of property may not be removed except in cases where the public good requires and with just compensation paid in advance.

All of the above shall be regulated by law.

Article 25

The State is committed to reviving and encouraging the system of charitable endowments.
The way an endowment is established, the management of its funds, their investment and the distribution of proceeds to the beneficiaries, shall all be regulated by law, according to the terms of the trustee.

Article 26
Social justice is the foundation of taxation and other public finance duties.

Public taxes shall not be established, modified or repealed except by law. There shall be no exemptions except in the cases prescribed by law. No one shall be required to pay additional taxes or fees except within the limits of the law.

Article 27

Workers shall have a share of the management and profits of enterprises. They shall be committed in turn to the development of production, to protecting its means and to the implementation of plans in their production units, in accordance with the law.

Workers shall be represented on the boards of directors of public sector units within the limit of 50 percent of the number of members of these boards. The law shall guarantee for small farmers and small craftsmen 80 percent of membership on the boards of directors of agricultural and industrial cooperatives.

Article 28
Saving is encouraged and protected by the State. The State shall also safeguard insurance and pension funds, in accordance with legal regulations.

Article 29

Nationalization shall not be allowed except for in consideration of public interest, in accordance with the law and against fair compensation.

Article 30
Public sequestration of property shall be prohibited.

Private sequestration shall not be allowed except under a court judgment.


Chapter One: Personal rights

Article 31
Dignity is the right of every human being, safeguarded by the State.

Insulting or showing contempt toward any human being shall be prohibited.

Article 32
Egyptian nationality is a right, regulated by law.

Article 33
All citizens are equal before the law. They have equal public rights and duties without discrimination.

Article 34
Individual freedom is a natural right, safeguarded and inviolable.

Article 35
Except in cases of flagrante delicto, no person may be arrested, inspected, detained or prevented from free movement except under a court order necessitated by investigations.

Any person arrested or detained must be informed of the reasons in writing within 12 hours, be presented to the investigating authority within 24 hours from the time of arrest, be interrogated only in the presence of a lawyer, and be provided with a lawyer when needed.

The person arrested or detained, and others, have the right of appeal to the courts against the measure of arrest. If a decision is not provided within a week, release becomes imperative.

The law regulates the rules for temporary detention, its duration and its causes, and cases of entitlement to compensation, whether for temporary detention or for a sentence carried out that a court final ruling has revoked.

Article 36
Any person arrested, detained or whose freedom is restricted in any way, shall be treated in a manner preserving human dignity. No physical or moral harm shall be inflicted upon that person.

Only places that are humanely and hygienically fit, and subject to judicial supervision, may be used for detention.

The violation of any of the above is an offense punishable by law.

Any statement proved to have been made by a person under any of the aforementioned forms of duress or coercion or under the threat thereof, shall be considered invalid and futile.

Article 37
Prison is a place of discipline and reform, subject to judicial supervision, where anything that is contrary to human dignity or a person’s health is prohibited.

The State is responsible for the rehabilitation of convicts and facilitating a decent life for them after their release.

Article 38
The private life of citizens is inviolable. Postal correspondence, wires, electronic correspondence, telephone calls and other means of communication shall have their own sanctity and secrecy and may not be confiscated or monitored except by a causal judicial warrant.

Article 39
Private homes are inviolable. With the exception of cases of immediate danger and distress, they may not be entered, searched or monitored, except in cases defined by law, and by a causal judicial warrant which specifies place, timing and purpose. Those in a home shall be alerted before the home is entered or searched.

Article 40
All residents have a right to security which is safeguarded by the State, and are protected by law against criminal threats.

Article 41
The sanctity of the human body is inviolable, and the trafficking of human organs prohibited. No person may be subjected to any medical or scientific experiment without free, documented consent, and in accordance with the established foundations of medical science, in the manner regulated by law.

Article 42
Freedom of movement, residence and immigration shall be safeguarded.

No citizen may be deported from or prevented from returning to the country.

No citizen shall be prevented from leaving the country, nor placed under house arrest, except by a causal judicial warrant, and for a definite period.

Chapter Two: Moral and political rights

Article 43
Freedom of belief is an inviolable right.

The State shall guarantee the freedom to practice religious rites and to establish places of worship for the divine religions, as regulated by law.

Article 44
Insult or abuse of all religious messengers and prophets shall be prohibited.

Article 45
Freedom of thought and opinion shall be guaranteed.

Every individual has the right to express an opinion and to disseminate it verbally, in writing or illustration, or by any other means of publication and expression.

Article 46
Freedom of creativity in its various forms is the right of every citizen.

The State shall advance science, literature and the arts, care for creators and inventors, protect their creations and innovations, and work to apply them for the benefit of society.

The State shall take the necessary measures to preserve the nation’s cultural heritage and promote cultural services.

Article 47
Access to information, data, documents and statistics, and the disclosure and circulation thereof, is a right guaranteed by the state, in a manner that does not violate the sanctity of private life or the rights of others, and that does not conflict with national security.

The law regulates the rules for filing and archiving public documents, the means of access to information, the means of complaint when access is refused, and the consequent accountability.

Article 48
Freedom of the press, printing, publication and mass media shall be guaranteed. The media shall be free and independent to serve the community and to express the different trends in public opinion, and contribute to shaping and directing in accordance with the basic principles of the State and society, and to maintain rights, freedoms and public duties, respecting the sanctity of the private lives of citizens and the requirements of national security. The closure or confiscation of media outlets is prohibited except with a court order.

Control over the media is prohibited, with the exception of specific censorship that may be imposed in times of war or public mobilization.

Article 49
Freedom to publish and own newspapers of all kinds is a guaranteed subject of notification for every natural or juridical Egyptian person.

The establishing of radio stations, television broadcasting and digital media is regulated by law.

Article 50
Citizens have the right to organize public meetings, processions and peaceful demonstrations, unarmed and based on the notification regulated by law.

The right to private assembly is guaranteed without the need for prior notice. Security personnel shall not attend or intercept such private meetings.

Article 51
Citizens have the right to establish associations and civil institutions, subject to notification only. Such institutions shall operate freely, and be deemed legal persons.

Authorities may not disband them or their administrative bodies without a court order, in the manner prescribed by the law.

Article 52
The freedom to form syndicates, unions and cooperatives is a right guaranteed by law. They shall be deemed legal persons, be formed on a democratic basis, operate freely, participate in the service of community service, raising the standard of productivity among their members, and safeguarding their assets.

Authorities may not disband them or their boards except under a court order.

Article 53
Trade unions are regulated by law and managed on a democratic basis, the accountability of their members subject to professional codes of ethics. One trade union is allowed per profession.

Authorities may not disband the boards of trade unions except with a court order, and may not place them under sequestration.

Article 54
Every individual has the right to address public authorities in writing and under his own signature.

Addressing public authorities should not be in the name of groups, with the exception of juridical persons.

Article 55
Citizen participation in public life and a national duty: Every citizen shall have the right to vote, run for elections, and express opinions in referendums, according to the provisions of the law.

The State is responsible for the inclusion of the name of every citizen who is qualified to vote in the voters’ database without waiting for an application.

The State shall ensure the fairness, validity, impartiality and integrity of referendums and elections. Interference in anything of the above is a crime punishable by law.

Article 56
The State shall safeguard the interests of Egyptians living abroad, protect them and protect their rights and freedoms, help them perform their public duties toward the Egyptian State and society, and encourage their contribution to the development of the nation.

Their participation in elections and referendums is regulated by law.

Article 57
The right to political asylum shall be granted by the State to every foreigner deprived in their country of public rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution.

Extradition of political refugees is prohibited.

All of the above shall be subject to law regulations.

Chapter Three: Economic and social rights

Article 58
High-quality education is a right guaranteed by the State for every citizen. It is free throughout its stages in all government institutions, obligatory in the primary stage, and the State shall work to extend obligation to other stages.

The State supports and encourages technical education, and oversees education in all its forms.

All educational institutions, public and private, local and otherwise shall abide by the State educational plans and goals, and realize the link between education and the needs of society and production.

Article 59
The State shall guarantee the freedom of scientific and literary research. The autonomy of universities, scientific and linguistic academies, and research centers shall be safeguarded; the State shall provide them with a sufficient percentage of the national revenue.

Article 60
The Arabic language is a primary subject in all stages of education in all educational institutions.

Religious education and national history are core subjects of pre-university education in all its forms.

Universities shall be committed to the teaching of ethics pertaining to the various disciplines.

Article 61
The State shall develop a comprehensive plan to eradicate illiteracy across ages, for males and females, to be executed with social participation within 10 years from the date of the constitution.

Article 62
Healthcare is a right of every citizen, and the State shall allocate a sufficient percentage of the national revenue.

The State shall provide healthcare services and health insurance in accordance with just and high standards, to be free of charge for those who are unable to pay.

All health facilities shall provide various forms of medical treatment to every citizen in cases of emergency or life danger.

The State shall supervise all health facilities, inspect them for quality of services, and monitor all materials, products and means of health-related publicity. Legislation to regulate such supervision shall be drafted.

Article 63
Work is a right, duty and honor for every citizen, guaranteed by the State on the basis of the principles of equality, justice and equal opportunities.

There shall be no forced labor except in accordance with law.

Public sector employees shall work in the service of the people. The State shall employ citizens on the basis of merit, without nepotism or mediation. Any violation is a crime punishable by law.

The State guarantees for every worker the right to fair pay, vacation, retirement and social security, healthcare, protection against occupational hazards, and the application of occupational safety conditions in the workplace, as prescribed by law.

Workers may not be dismissed except in the cases prescribed by law.

The right to peaceful strike is regulated by law.

Article 64
With regards to the martyrs and the injured of wars, of the 25 January revolution, and of national duty, the State shall honor them and support their families, as well as war veterans and the injured, the families of those missing at war, and similar cases.

They, their children and their wives shall have priority in employment opportunities.

All of the above shall be regulated by law.

Article 65
The State shall provide social insurance services.

All citizens unable to support themselves and their families in cases of incapacity, unemployment and old age have the right to social insurance guaranteeing a minimum sustenance.

Article 66
The State shall provide an adequate pension for small-scale farmers, agricultural workers, casual workers, and all who do not have access to the social insurance system.

All are subject to law regulations.

Article 67
Adequate housing, clean water and healthy food are given rights.

The state adopts a national housing plan, its basis in social justice, the promotion of independent initiatives and housing cooperatives, and the regulation of the use of national territory for the purposes of construction, in accordance with public interest and with the rights of future generations.

Article 68
Everyone has the right to play sports.

State and social institutions shall strive to discover talented athletes and support them, and take the necessary measures to encourage exercise.

Article 69
All individuals have the right to a healthy environment. The State shall safeguard the environment against pollution, and promote the use of natural resources in a manner that prevents damage to the environment and preserves the rights of future generations.

Article 70
Every child, from the moment of birth, has the right to a proper name, family care, basic nutrition, shelter, health services, and religious, emotional and cognitive development.

The State shall care and protect the child in the case of the loss of family. The State also safeguards the rights of disabled children, and their rehabilitation and integration into society.

Child labor is prohibited before passing the age of compulsory education, in jobs that are not fit for a child’s age, or that prevent the child from continuing education.

A child may only be detained for a specified period, must be provided with legal assistance, and be held in a convenient location, taking into account separation according to gender, ages and type of crime, and be held away from places of adult detention.

Article 71
The State shall provide care for children and youth; shall support their development spiritually, morally, culturally, educationally, physically, psychologically, socially and economically; and shall empower them for active political participation.

Article 72
The State shall provide for people with disabilities health, economic and social care, and shall provide them with employment opportunities, raise social awareness toward them, and adapt public facilities to suit their needs.

Article 73
All forms of oppression, exploitation and sex trafficking are prohibited and criminalized by law.

Chapter Four: Guarantees for the protection of rights and freedoms

Article 74
Sovereignty of the law shall be the basis of rule in the State.

The independence and immunity of the judiciary are two basic guarantees to safeguard rights and freedoms.

Article 75
The right to litigation is inalienable and guaranteed for all.

The State shall guarantee accessibility of judicature for litigants, and rapid decision on cases.

Any stipulation of immunity of any act or administrative decision from the control of the judicature is prohibited.

No person shall be tried except before their natural judge; exceptional courts are prohibited.

Article 76
Penalty shall be personalized. There shall be no crime or penalty except by virtue of the law. No penalty shall be inflicted except by a judicial sentence. Penalty shall be inflicted only for acts committed subsequent to the promulgation of the law prescribing it.

Article 77
No criminal action shall be made except under an order from a judiciary body, save for cases defined by law.

A defendant is innocent until proven guilty in legal trial, and granted the right of defense. Every person accused of a felony shall be provided with a defense lawyer. Minor offenses, in which a defense lawyer is also required, are determined by law.

The law regulates the rules of appeal for felonies and offenses.

The state shall provide protection for victims of crime, witnesses, defendants and informants where necessary.

Article 78
The right of defense in person or by proxy is guaranteed.

The law secures, for financially incapable citizens, means to resort to justice and to defend their rights.

Article 79
Sentences shall be issued and enforced in the name of the people. Abstention from or obstruction of enforcing such sentences on the part of the concerned civil servants is considered a crime punishable by law. In such case, a person issued a sentence in his favor shall have the right to lodge a direct criminal action before the competent court.

Article 80
Any encroachment on any of the rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution shall be considered a crime for which criminal and civil lawsuit shall not be forfeited by prescription. The State shall grant a fair compensation to the victim of such encroachment.

The injured party shall have the right to lodge a direct criminal action.

The National Council for Human Rights shall inform the Public Prosecution of any violation of these rights, may join the injured party in a civil action, and may appeal on their behalf.

Article 81
Rights and freedoms pertaining to the individual citizen shall not be subject to disruption or detraction.

No law that regulates the practice of the rights and freedoms shall include what would constrain their essence.

Such rights and freedoms shall be practiced in a manner not conflicting with the principles pertaining to State and society included in Part I of this Constitution.


Chapter One: Legislative authority

Section 1: Common provisions

Article 82
The legislative power shall consist of the House of Representatives and the Shura Council.

Each shall exercise their respective authorities as set out in the Constitution.

Article 83
Membership of the House of Representatives and the Shura Council may not be combined.

Other cases of incompatibility may be specified by law.

Article 84
Save in exceptional cases defined by law, members of either the House of Representatives or the Shura Council are to be fully devoted to their offices, with any other job or post kept open for their return, in accordance with the provisions of the law.

Article 85
A Member of a Legislative House is unconditionally representative of the population as a whole.

Article 86
Prior to the start of his or her tenure, a Member shall take the following oath before his or her Council: “I swear by Almighty God to loyally uphold the republican system, to respect the Constitution and the law, to fully look after the interests of the people, and to safeguard the independence and territorial integrity of the motherland.”

Article 87
The Court of Cassation shall have final jurisdiction over the validity of memberships in both Houses. Challenges shall be submitted to the court within a period not exceeding 30  days from the announcement of the final election results, and a verdict shall be passed within 60 days from the date of receipt of the challenge.

Where a membership is deemed invalid, it becomes void from the date the verdict is reported to Parliament.

Article 88
Throughout his or her tenure, no Member of a Legislative House may, in person of through an intermediary, purchase or rent any State property, lease or sell to or barter with the State any part of their own property, or conclude a contract with the State as vendor, supplier or contractor.

Members shall provide financial disclosures and present them to their Council, at the start and at the end of their tenure, as well as at the end of each year.

If, in relation to their membership in a Legislative House, Members should receive cash or in-kind gifts, such gifts shall go into the Public Treasury.

All of the above is subject to regulation by law.

Article 89
Members of the Legislative Houses shall not be held to account for any opinions pertaining to their tasks in Parliament.

Article 90
It is prohibited, except in cases of flagrante delicto, to take criminal action against Members of the Legislative Houses without prior permission from their Council. If not in session, permission must be granted by the Council Office, and the House of Representatives or Shura Council notified at the first subsequent session of any measures taken.

In all cases, if a request for permission to take legal action against a Member of Parliament does not receive a response within 30 days, the permission is to be considered granted.

Article 91
Members shall receive a remuneration determined by the law.

Article 92
The seats of both the House of Representatives and the Shura Council are in Cairo.

However, in exceptional circumstances, either of them may hold meetings elsewhere, at the request of the President of the Republic or one-third of the members of the House or Council.

Any meetings otherwise shall be deemed illegitimate and the resolutions passed therein shall be considered void.

Article 93
The sessions of the House of Representatives and the Shura Council shall be held in public.

However, closed sessions may be held at the request of the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister, or at least 20 of its members. The House of Representatives or Shura Council shall then decide whether the debate on the question submitted thereto shall take place in public or closed sessions.

Article 94
The President of the Republic shall convoke the House of Representatives and the Shura Council for their ordinary annual sessions before the first Thursday of October. If not convoked, the Councils are prescribed by the Constitution to meet on the said day.

The ordinary meeting session shall continue for at least eight months. The President of the Republic shall bring each session to a close with the approval of the Councils, and in the case of the House of Representatives, only after the general budget of the State has been adopted.

Article 95
When necessary, the House of Representatives or the Shura Council may be called to an extraordinary meeting, by the President of the Republic, by the Cabinet, or upon a request signed by at least 10 Shura Council or House of Representatives members.

Article 96
The meetings of the House of Representatives or Shura Council, and the resolutions they pass, shall not be considered valid unless attended by the majority of its members.

In cases other than those stipulating a special majority, resolutions shall be adopted based on an absolute majority of the members present. In case of a tie vote, the matter in deliberation shall be deemed rejected.

Article 97
Each Council shall elect, in the first meeting of its regular annual session, a speaker and two deputy speakers for the full legislative term in the case of the House of Representatives, and for half of the legislative term in the case of the Shura Council. If the seat of either becomes vacant, the Shura Council or House of Representatives shall elect a replacement, whose term will last until the end of its predecessor’s.

In all cases, one-third of the members of either House could request a new election of the Speaker or Deputy Speakers in the first meeting of the regular annual session.

Article 98
If the presidency is temporarily assumed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives or of the Shura Council, said Council shall be chaired by the older of the two Deputy Speakers.

Article 99
Each Council shall lay down its own bylaws regulating its work and the manner of practicing its functions, to be published in the Official Gazette.

Article 100
Each Council shall maintain its internal order, a responsibility assumed by each Council’s Speaker.

No armed forces may be present within or in vicinity of either of the Legislative Houses except at the request of the Council’s Speaker.

Article 101
The President of the Republic, the Cabinet, and every member of the House of Representatives shall have the right to propose laws.

Every draft law shall be referred to a specialist committee of the House of Representatives, which shall study it and submit a report.

Draft laws presented by members of the House of Representatives shall not be referred to that committee before being first endorsed by the Proposals Committee and approved for consideration by the House of Representatives. Reasons for rejection must be presented if the Proposals Committee does not endorse a proposal for consideration.

A draft law proposed by a member but rejected by the House of Representatives may not be presented again during the same legislative term.

Article 102
Neither of the Legislative Houses may pass a bill without seeking consultation.

Each Council has the right to apply amendments and break down existing clauses or suggested amendments.

Each bill passed by one of the Councils shall be passed on to the other, which in turn shall not delay it for more than 60 days, excluding the legislative recess. It shall not be considered a law unless passed by both Councils.

Article 103
In case of legislative dispute between the two Councils, a joint committee of 20 members shall be formed, 10 selected by each Council from among its members and based on the nominations of its General Committee. The joint committee shall then propose the wording of the disputed clauses.

The proposals are then presented to each Council; if an agreement is not reached, the case is taken to the House of Representatives to reach a decision based on a two-thirds majority vote.

Article 104
The House of Representatives shall notify the President of the Republic of any law passed for the President to issue the new law within 15 days from the date of receiving it. In case the President objects to the draft law, it must be referred back to the House of Representatives within 30 days.

If the draft law is not referred back within this period, or if it is approved again by a majority of two-thirds of the members, it shall be considered a law and shall be disseminated as such.

If it is not approved by the House of Representatives, it may not be presented in the same session before four months have passed from the date of the decision.

Article 105
Every member of the House of Representatives or Shura Council is entitled to address questions to the Prime Minister or any of his deputies or ministers concerning matters within their respective jurisdiction. They in turn shall be obliged to answer such questions.

The Member may withdraw the question at any time, and the same question may not be transformed into an interrogation within the same session.

Article 106
Any Member of either Council may propose to the Prime Minister, one of his deputies or a minister the discussion of a public issue.

Article 107
Any 20 members of the House of Representatives, or 10 of the Shura Council, may request the discussion of a public issue to obtain clarification on the government’s policy in its regard.

Article 108
Any Member of the House of Representatives or the Shura Council has the right to obtain data or information pertaining to their own performance at the Council, taking into account the provisions of Article 47 of the Constitution.

Article 109
Citizens may submit written proposals to either Council regarding public issues.

Citizens may also submit complaints to either Council to be referred to the relevant ministers. Based on the Council’s request, the minister may provide a clarification, and the citizen who issued the complaint shall be kept informed.

Article 110
The Prime Minister, his deputies, ministers and their deputies may attend the sessions and committees of the Councils. Their attendance may be obligatory if requested by either Council. They may be assisted by high-ranking officials of their choice.

They shall be heard whenever they request to speak; they shall answer questions pertaining to issues in discussion, but shall have no counted vote when votes are taken.

Article 111
Each Council accepts the resignation of its members, which must be submitted in writing, and to be accepted must not be submitted after a Council has started measure of revoking membership against the resigning Member.

Article 112
Membership of either Council may only be revoked if a Member has lost trust, status or any of the membership requirements that were prerequisites for their election, or if they have violated the duties of the membership.

Decision on revoking membership shall be issued by a majority of two-thirds of the Council in question.

Article 113
If the seat of a member becomes vacant at least six months before the end of term, the vacant position must be filled in accordance with the law within 60 days from the date the vacancy is first reported.

The term of the new Member shall be complementary to that of the predecessor.

Section 2: House of Representatives

Article 114
The House of Representatives shall have at least 350 members, elected by direct, secret public balloting.

A candidate for parliamentary elections must be an Egyptian citizen, enjoying civil and political rights, holder of a certificate of basic education, and 25 years old or older at the time of candidacy.

Other requirements of candidacy, the provisions for election, the fairly representative division of constituencies, shall be defined by law.

Article 115
The term of membership is five calendar years, commencing from the date of its first session.

Elections for a new House of Representatives shall be held during the 60 days preceding the end of term for the previous House of Representatives.

Article 116
The House of Representatives shall hold the legislative power, and be responsible for approving the general policy of the State, the public plan for economic and social development and the Overall Budget of the State. It shall exercise control over the work of the executive authority, in the manner prescribed by the Constitution.

The procedures for drafting the public plan for economic and social development, and presenting it to the House of Representatives, are determined by law.

Article 117
The Overall Budget of the state must include all revenue and expenditure without exception. The draft Overall Budget shall be submitted to the House of Representatives at least 90 days before the beginning of the fiscal year. It shall not be considered in effect unless approved thereby, and it shall be put to vote on a chapter-by-chapter basis.

The House of Representatives may modify the expenditures in the draft Budget, except those proposed to honor a specific liability. Should the modification result in an increase in total expenditure, the House of Representatives shall agree with the government on means to secure revenue resources to achieve the balance between revenues and expenditures. The Budget shall be issued in a law, which may include modification in any existing law to the extent necessary to realize such balance.

If the new budget is not approved before the beginning of the new fiscal year, the earlier budget shall remain in effect until the new budget has been approved.

The specifics of the fiscal year, the method of budget preparation, the provisions of the budgets of institutions, public bodies, and their accounts, shall be defined by law.

Article 118
The approval of the House of Representatives is necessary for the transfer of any funds from one chapter of the Budget to another, as well as for any expenditure not included therein or in excess of its estimates; the approval shall be issued in a law.

Article 119
The basic rules for collection of public funds and the procedure for their disbursement shall be regulated by law.

Article 120
The rules governing salaries, pensions, indemnities, subsides and bonuses taken from the State Treasury are regulated by law; so are the cases for exception from such rules, and the authorities in charge of their application.

Article 121
The Executive Authority shall not contract a loan, obtain a fund, or commit itself to a project entailing expenditure from the State Treasury for a subsequent period, except with the House of Representatives’ approval.

Article 122
The final account of the Overall Budget shall be submitted to the House of Representatives within a period not exceeding six months from the end of the fiscal year. The annual report of the Central Auditing Organization and the latter’s observations on the final account are to be attached.

The final account of the Overall Budget shall be put to vote on a chapter-by-chapter basis and shall be issued by a law.

The House of Representatives has the right to request from the Central Auditing Organization any additional data or pertinent reports.

Article 123
The House of Representatives may form a special committee or entrust one of its existing committees to examine the activities of any administrative department or institution or public enterprise, for the purpose of fact-finding regarding a specific issue and informing the House of Representatives of the actual financial, administrative or economic status, or for conducting investigations into a past activity; the House of Representatives shall decide on the appropriate course of action.

In order to carry out its mission, such a committee would be entitled to collect the evidence it deems necessary and to summon individuals for interviews. All executive and administrative bodies shall respond to demands by the committee and put under its disposal all the documents and evidence required.

Article 124
Members of the House of Representatives have the right to submit a request for information or for an urgent statement to the Prime Minister, to one of the Prime Minister’s deputies, or to a minister in urgent public matters of importance.

The government is obliged to respond.

Article 125
Every Member of the House of Representatives is entitled to address interpellations to the Prime Minister, the Prime Minister’s deputies, or to ministers concerning matters within their respective jurisdiction.

Debate on an interpellation shall take place at least seven days after its submission, except in cases of urgency as decided by the House of Representatives and with the government’s consent.

Article 126
The House of Representatives may decide to withdraw its confidence from the Prime Minister, a deputy of the Prime Minister, or any one of the ministers.

A motion of no confidence may be submitted only after an interpellation, upon proposal by one-tenth of the House of Representatives’ members. The House of Representatives should reach a decision within seven days from the date of debating the motion. Withdrawal of confidence needs a majority vote from the members of the House of Representatives.

In all case, a no confidence motion may not be passed in connection with an issue that had already been decided upon in the same juridical term.

If the House of Representatives decides to withdraw confidence from the Prime Minister or a minister, and the Cabinet announced its solidarity with him before the vote, then that Cabinet is obliged to offer its resignation. If the no confidence resolution concerns a certain member of the government, that member is obliged to resign their office.

Article 127
The President of the Republic may not dissolve the House of Representatives except by a causative decision and following a public referendum.

A House of Representatives may not be dissolved during its first annual session, nor for the same cause for which the immediately previous House of Representatives was dissolved.

To dissolve the House of Representatives, the President must issue a decision to suspend parliamentary sessions and hold a referendum within 20 days. If voters agreed with a valid majority on the dissolution, it shall be carried out. The President shall then call for early parliamentary elections to take place within 30 days from the date of the dissolution. The new House of Representatives shall convene within the 10 days following the completion of elections.

If no such majority agrees to the dissolution, the President of the Republic shall resign.

If, however, the referendum or elections do not take place within the specified time limit, the existing Parliament shall reconvene of its own accord on the day following the expiry of the time limit.

Section 3: Shura Council

Article 128
The Shura Council shall have at least 150 members, elected by direct secret ballot. The President of the Republic may appoint a number of members not exceeding one-tenth of the number of elected members.

Article 129
A candidate for the Shura Council must be an Egyptian citizen enjoying civil and political rights, a holder of a certificate of higher education, and, at the time of candidacy, at least 35 years old.

Other requirements of candidacy, the provisions for election, the division of constituencies, shall be defined by law.

Article 130
The term of membership of the Shura Council is six years, whereas renewed election and appointment of 50 percent of the total number of members, whether elected or appointed, is every three years, as defined by law.

Article 131
In the case of the dissolution of House of Representatives, the Shura Council shall carry out its joint legislative responsibilities. Any bills passed by the Shura Council during the period of House of Representatives’ dissolution shall be presented to the new House of Representatives for consideration as soon as it is convened.

In the absence of both Legislative Houses, and where there is a requirement for urgent measures, the President of the Republic may issue decrees that have the force of law, which shall then be presented to the House of Representatives and the Shura Council — as the case may be — within 15 days from the start of their sessions.

If such decrees were not presented to the Councils, or if they were presented but not approved, their force of law is retrospectively revoked, unless the Council affirms their validity for the previous period, or chooses to settle the consequent effects in some other manner.

Chapter Two: Executive Authority

Section 1: The President

Article 132
The President is the Head of State and chief of the executive authority. He looks after the interests of the people, safeguards the independence and territorial integrity of the motherland, and observes the separation between powers.

He carries out his responsibilities in the manner prescribed in the Constitution.

Article 133
The President of the Republic shall be elected for a period of four calendar years, commencing on the day the term of his predecessor ends. The President may be reelected only once.

The process of the presidential election begins at least 90 days before the end of the presidential term. The result is to be announced at least 10 days before the end of term.

The President of the Republic may not hold any partisan position for the duration of the presidency.

Article 134
A presidential candidate must be an Egyptian citizen born to Egyptian parents, must have carried no other citizenship, must have civil and political rights, cannot be married to a non-Egyptian, and at the time of nomination cannot be younger than 40 Gregorian years.

Article 135
A prerequisite for nomination to the presidency is a recommendation by at least 20 elected members of the House of Representatives and the Shura Council, or endorsements from at least 20,000 citizens who have the right to vote, in at least 10 governorates, with a minimum of 1,000 endorsements from each governorate.

No one shall be allowed to endorse more than one candidate, as shall be regulated by law.

Article 136
The President of the Republic is elected by direct secret ballot, with an absolute majority of valid votes. The procedures for electing the President of the Republic shall be regulated by law.

Article 137
Before assuming the presidential position, the President of the Republic shall take the following oath before the House of Representatives and the Shura Council: “I swear by Almighty God to loyally uphold the republican system, to respect the Constitution and the law, to fully look after the interests of the people and to safeguard the independence and territorial integrity of the motherland.”

In case the House of Representatives is dissolved, the oath is to be taken before the Shura Council.

Article 138
The finances of the President of the Republic are stipulated by law; the President shall not receive any other salary or remuneration, nor engage throughout the presidential term, whether in person or through an intermediary, in an independent profession or business, nor is the President allowed to buy or rent state property, nor lease or sell to or barter with the State any part of their own property, nor conclude a contract with the State as vendor, supplier or contractor.

The President must submit to the House of Representatives a financial disclosure upon taking office, upon leaving it, and at the end of each year.

If, in relation to the presidential post, the President should receive, in person or through an intermediary, cash or in-kind gifts, such gifts shall go into the State Treasury.

All of the above is subject to regulation by law.

Article 139
The President of the Republic appoints the Prime Minister, who shall be assigned by the President the task of forming the Cabinet and presenting it to the House of Representatives within 30 days. If the Cabinet is not granted parliamentary confidence, the President shall appoint another Prime Minister from the party that holds the majority of seats in the House of Representatives. If the Cabinet of that appointed Prime Minister does not obtain parliamentary confidence within a similar period, the House of Representatives then appoints a Prime Minister who shall be assigned by the President the task of forming a Cabinet, provided said Cabinet obtains parliamentary confidence within a similar period. Otherwise, the President of the Republic shall dissolve the House of Representatives and call the elections of a new House of Representatives within 60 days from the date the dissolution is announced.

In all cases, the sum of the periods set forth in this Article should not exceed 90 days.

In the case of dissolution of the House of Representatives, the Prime Minister shall present the Cabinet and its plan to the new House of Representatives at its first session.

Article 140
The President of the Republic, in conjunction with the Cabinet, shall lay out the public policy of the State and oversee its implementation, in the manner prescribed in the Constitution.

Article 141
The President of the Republic shall exercise presidential authority via the Prime Minister and the Prime Minister’s deputies and ministers, except those authorities related to defense, national security and foreign policy, and authorities outlined in Articles 139, 145, 146, 147, 148 and 149 of the Constitution.

Article 142
The President of the Republic may delegate some of the presidential purviews to the Prime Minister, the Prime Minister’s deputies, ministers or governors, in the manner regulated by law.

Article 143
The President of the Republic may call for Cabinet meetings to discuss important matters, shall preside over such meetings, and shall request reports about public affairs from the Prime Minister.

Article 144
The President of the Republic shall deliver a statement on the general policy of the State in a joint session of the House of Representatives and the Shura Council at the opening of their regular annual sessions.

The President may, when appropriate, make other statements or convey specific messages to either Council.

Article 145
The President of the Republic shall represent the State in foreign relations and shall conclude treaties and ratify them after the approval of the House of Representatives and the Shura Council. Such treaties shall have the force of law after ratification and publication, according to established procedures.

Approval must be acquired from both Legislative Houses with a two-thirds majority of their members for any treaty of peace, alliance, trade and navigation, and all treaties related to the rights of sovereignty or that make the State Treasury liable for any expenditures not included in its overall budget.

No treaty contrary to the provisions of the Constitution shall be approved.

Article 146
The President of the Republic shall be the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces. The President is not to declare war, or send the Armed Forces outside State territory, except after consultation with the National Defense Council and the approval of the House of Representatives with a majority of its members.

Article 147
The President of the Republic shall appoint civil and military personnel and dismiss them, shall appoint diplomatic representatives and remove them, and shall confirm political representatives of foreign countries and organizations, as regulated by law.

Article 148
The President of the Republic shall declare, after consultation with the Cabinet, a state of emergency in the manner regulated by law. Such proclamation must be submitted to House of Representatives within the following seven days.

If the declaration takes place when the House of Representatives is not in session, a session is called for immediately. In case the House of Representatives is dissolved, the matter shall be submitted to the Shura Council, all within the period specified in the preceding paragraph. The declaration of a state of emergency must be approved by a majority of members of each Council. The declaration shall be for a specified period not exceeding six months, which can only be extended by another similar period upon the people’s approval in a public referendum.

The House of Representatives cannot be dissolved while a state of emergency is in place.

Article 149
The President of the Republic may issue a pardon or mitigate a sentence.

General amnesty may only be granted in a law.

Article 150
The President of the Republic may call for a referendum on important issues relating to the supreme interests of the State.
The result of a referendum shall be binding to all state authorities and the general public in all cases.

Article 151
For the President of the Republic to resign, a letter of resignation must be presented to the House of Representatives.

Article 152
A charge of felony or treason against the President of the Republic is to be based on a motion signed by at least one-third of the members of the House of Representatives. An impeachment is to be issued only by a two-thirds majority of the members of the House of Representatives.

As soon as an impeachment decision has been issued, the President of the Republic shall cease all work; this shall be treated as a temporary obstacle preventing the President from carrying out presidential duties until a verdict is reached.

The President of the Republic shall be tried before a special court headed by the President of the Supreme Constitutional Court, the longest-serving Deputy of the President of the Court of Cassation and the State Council, and the two longest-serving presidents of the Court of Appeals; the prosecution to be carried out before such court by the Prosecutor General.

The prosecution, trial procedure and penalty are regulated by law. In the case of conviction, the President of the Republic shall be relieved of his post, without prejudice to other penalties.

Article 153
If on account of a temporary obstacle, the President of the Republic is rendered unable to carry out the presidential functions, the Prime Minister shall act in his place.

If the Presidential office becomes vacant, due to resignation, death, permanent inability to work or any other reason, the House of Representatives shall announce the vacancy and notify the Presidential Elections Commission. The Speaker of the House of Representatives shall temporarily assume the presidential authorities.

The Shura Council and its Speaker replace the House of Representatives and its Speaker in the above in cases in which the House of Representatives is dissolved.

In all cases, a new president must be elected during a period not exceeding 90 days from the date the office became vacant.

The person acting in place of the President is not allowed to run for office, request any amendment to the Constitution, dissolve the Parliament or dismiss the Cabinet.

Article 154
If the vacancy of the presidential office occurs at the same time that a referendum or the election of either the House of Representatives or the Shura Council is being held, precedence shall be given to the presidential elections. The existing Parliament shall continue in place until the completion of the presidential elections.

Section 2: The Cabinet

Article 155
The Cabinet consists of the Prime Minister, the Prime Minister’s deputies and the ministers.

The Prime Minister heads the Cabinet, oversees its work, and directs it in the performance of its functions.

Article 156
A person appointed to the position of Prime Minister or any other position in the Cabinet must be an Egyptian citizen, enjoying civil and political rights, over the age of 30, and not having carried the citizenship of any other country unless renounced within a year of reaching the age of eighteen.

It is prohibited hold a position in the Cabinet in addition to membership in either the House of Representatives or the Shura Council; if a House or Council Member is appointed to government, their place in Parliament is vacated and the provisions of Article 113 of the Constitution are applied.

Article 157
Before assuming their duties, the Prime Minister and members of the Cabinet shall take the following oath before the President of the Republic: “I swear by Almighty God to loyally uphold the republican system, to respect the Constitution and the law, to fully look after the interests of the people and to safeguard the independence and territorial integrity of the motherland.”

Article 158
The finances of the Prime Minister and members of Cabinet are stipulated by law; they shall not receive any other salary or remuneration, nor engage throughout the term of their posts, whether in person or through an intermediary, in independent professions or business, nor are they allowed to buy or rent state property, nor lease or sell to or barter with the State any part of their own property, nor conclude a contract with the State as vendors, suppliers or contractors.

A member of Cabinet must submit a financial disclosure to the House of Representatives upon taking office, upon leaving it and at the end of each year.

If, in relation to their posts, they should receive cash or in-kind gifts, such gifts shall go into the State Treasury. All of the above is subject to regulation by law.

Article 159
The Cabinet shall exercise the following functions in particular:

1. Collaborate with the President of the Republic in laying down the public policy of the State and overseeing its implementation.
2. Direct, coordinate and follow up on the work of the ministries and their affiliated public bodies and organizations.
3. Prepare draft laws and decrees.
4. Issue administrative decisions in accordance with the law, and monitor their implementation.
5. Prepare the draft Overall Budget of the State.
6. Prepare the draft economic and social development plan of the state.
7. Contract and grant loans in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.
8. Supervise the implementation of laws, maintain state security and protect the rights of the citizens and the interests of the State.

Article 160
The Minister shall draw up the ministry’s general policy, supervise its implementation and offer guidance and control, in the framework of the State’s public policy.

Article 161
A member of the Cabinet may make a statement before the House of Representatives, the Shura Council, or one of their committees, concerning any matters within the scope of his purview.

The Council or committee may discuss such a statement and convey its position regarding it.

Article 162
The Prime Minister shall issue necessary regulations for the enforcement of laws, in such a manner that does not involve any disruption, modification, or exemption from their enforcement, and shall have the right to vest others with authority to issue them, unless the law designates who should issue the necessary regulations for its own implementation.

Article 163
The Prime Minister shall issue the regulations necessary for the creation and organization of public services and facilities upon the Cabinet’s approval. The House of Representatives’ approval is required, if such regulations result in new expenditures in the Overall Budget of the State.

Article 164
The Prime Minister shall issue regulations of discipline upon the Cabinet’s approval.

Article 165
The authority in charge of the appointment and dismissal of civil servants, the functions of the main positions, and the responsibilities, rights and securities of employees, is regulated by law.

Article 166
The President of the Republic, the Prosecutor General, and the House of Representatives, with a motion signed by one-third of its members, have the right to accuse the Prime Minister or any of the members of the Cabinet concerning crimes committed during their term of office or in relation to their work.

In all cases, charges can only be brought with the approval of two-thirds of the members of the House of Representatives. An accused member of Cabinet is relieved of their post until a verdict is reached. The end of their term of service does not preclude the start or resumption of prosecution.

Article 167
For the Cabinet or one of its members to resign, a letter of resignation must be presented to the President of the Republic.

Chapter Three: The Judicial Authority

Section 1: General Provisions

Article 168
The Judicial Authority shall be independent, vested in the courts of justice, which shall issue their judgments in accordance with the law. It’s powers are defined by law. Interference in the affairs of the judiciary is a crime that is not forfeited by the passing of time.

Article 169
Every judiciary body shall administer its own affairs; each shall have an independent budget and be consulted on the draft laws governing its affairs, by the means that are regulated by law.

Article 170
Judges are independent, cannot be dismissed, are subject to no other authority but the law, and are equal in rights and duties.

The conditions and procedures for their appointment and disciplinary actions against them are defined and regulated by the law. When delegated, their delegation shall be absolute, to the destinations and in the positions defined by the law, all in a manner that preserves the independence of the judiciary and the accomplishment of its duties.

Article 171
Sessions in court shall be public, unless, in consideration of public order or morals, the court deems them confidential. In all cases, the verdict shall be given in an open session.

Section 2: The Judiciary and Public Prosecution

Article 172
The judiciary adjudicates in all disputes and crimes except for matters that are to be decided by another judicial body. The judiciary settles any disputes relating to the affairs of its members.

Article 173
The Public Prosecution is an integral part of the judiciary, to investigate, press and follow charges in all criminal cases except what is exempted by law. Other competencies are defined by law.

The Public Prosecution is conducted by a Prosecutor General appointed by the President of the Republic, based on the selection of the Supreme Judicial Council from among the Deputies to the President of the Court of Cassation, the Presidents of the Court of Appeals and Assistant Prosecutor Generals, for a period of four years, or for the period remaining until retirement age, whichever comes first, and only once during a judge’s career.

Section 3: The State Council

Article 174
The State Council is an independent judicial body that exclusively undertakes adjudicating in administrative disputes and disputes pertaining to the implementation of its decisions. It also undertakes disciplinary proceedings and appeals, adjudicates in legal issues to be determined by law, reviews and drafts bills and resolutions of legislative character referred to it, and reviews contracts to which the State is a party.

Other competencies to be determined by law.

Section 4: The Supreme Constitutional Court

Article 175
The Supreme Constitutional Court is an independent judicial body, seated in Cairo, which exclusively undertakes the judicial control of the constitutionality of the laws and regulations.
The law defines other competencies and regulates the procedures to be followed before the court.

Article 176
The Supreme Constitutional Court is made up of a president and ten members. The law determines judicial or other bodies that shall nominate them and regulates the manner of their appointment and requirements to be satisfied by them. Appointments take place by a decree from the President of the Republic.

Article 177
The President of the Republic or Parliament shall present draft laws governing presidential, legislative or local elections before the Supreme Constitutional Court, to determine their compliance with the Constitution prior to dissemination. The Court shall reach a decision in this regard within 45 days from the date the matter is presented before it; otherwise, the proposed law shall be considered approved.

If the Court deems one or more parts of the text non-compliant with the provisions of the Constitution, its decision shall be implemented.

The laws referred to in the first paragraph are not subject to the subsequent control stipulated in Article 175 of the Constitution.

Article 178
The Official Gazette shall publish verdicts issued by the Supreme Constitutional Court and decisions pertaining to preemptive control of draft laws governing presidential, legislative or local elections.

The effects of a decision on the unconstitutionality of a legislative text are regulated by law.

Section 5: Judicial Bodies

Article 179
State Affairs is an independent judicial body; it undertakes legal representation of the State in disputes, and technical supervision of legal affairs departments within State Administration.

It shall be responsible for the drafting of contracts and the settling of disputes to which the State is a party, in the manner regulated by law.

Other competencies shall be defined by law.

Its members share immunities, securities, rights and duties assigned to other members of the judiciary.

Article 180
The Administrative Prosecution is an independent judicial body; it investigates financial and administrative irregularities, raises disciplinary proceedings before the courts of the State Council and follows up on them, and takes legal action to address deficiencies in public facilities. Other competencies shall be defined by law.

Its members share immunities, securities, rights and duties assigned to other members of the judiciary.

Section 6: Judicial Officers

Article 181
The legal profession is a free profession and a cornerstone of justice. Lawyers shall be autonomous in practicing their profession and shall be safeguarded by guarantees that protect them and enable them to carry out their work, in the manner regulated by law.

Article 182
Officers at the Real Estate Publicity Department, forensic experts and judicial experts shall enjoy technical autonomy in their work.

The Scholars Of Brodi

Friday, November 30th, 2012

A famous scholars of the beis midrash in the city of Brodi was Rav Avraham Gershon of Kitov. This modest and unassuming man possessed such wondrous qualities of goodness and knowledge that the great Nodah B’Yehudah referred to him, in part, as follows:

“The complete and all encompassing scholar, the hallowed pious one, light of Yisrael, the pillar of the right hand, mighty hand….”

Rav Avraham Gershon was, as were all scholars of Brodi, a strong opponent of the Chassidus the Baal Shem Tov advocated at that time. Ironically, however, it was his sister who became the wife of the Baal Shem Tov. At first this made no difference to Rav Avraham Gershon, but as the days passed and he came to know his brother-in-law intimately, he began to behold the great and noble qualities that made the Baal Shem Tov the leader he was. It was not long after that that Rav Avraham Gershon became one of the staunchest supporters of the Baal Shem Tov and his teachings. Indeed, it was he who was sent to Eretz Yisrael to lay the foundation for Chassidus there. The tale of how this came about follows.

Rabi Chaim Ben Atar

In those days Rabi Chaim Ben Atar went up from the Diaspora to Eretz Yisrael. This gaon, known to the wise men of his generation as “similar to an angel of the Lord,” was a man of firm views, who never flattered or bowed to any man. Nevertheless, when it came to the community of Yisrael, he maintained an attitude of respect and awe.

He would always say, “The verse says: ‘These are the words that Moshe spoke.’ All the 40 years that Moshe led Bnei Yisrael in the desert he never spoke harshly to them except for this one verse. Here you should ask the question: ‘Does it not say that Moshe declared: Listen rebels?’ The answer is that Moshe did not say this to the entire community, but rather only to a small group who rebelled against the teachings of the law.”


Despite his refusal to bow to people, Rabi Chaim was a humble and patient man and forgiving to those who insulted him. It is related that he was involved one time in a case of law. He patiently heard both sides and carefully went over the evidence. Finally, he ruled that the defendant was liable for damages.

When the defendant heard this he flew into a rage and began to insult the rav, even going so far as to impugn his honesty. Rabi Chaim sat quietly, never growing angry or answering the man. Later his students, who were shocked by the affair, asked him in amazement, “Rabi, where is the staunch spirit for which you are so famous?”

“What, in your opinion, should I have done?” he asked

“We feel that this man deserved to have been condemned and driven out of the house and a ban placed on him until he apologized,” the students answered.

Rabi Chaim laughed and replied, “And yet, consider this. The man has been found guilty and his soul is bitter because of it. Nevertheless, the general public will understand this and certainly not suspect me of anything. They fully believe that I have judged the case fairly. What would happen, however, if I placed him under the ban?

“If I did that, if I angrily punished him for insulting me in his time of bitterness, then the people would begin to question my objectivity and my judgment.”

Rav Avraham Gershon Sent To Eretz Yisrael

The great name of Rabi Chaim reached as far as Poland, and the Baal Shem Tov longed to meet him and create with him a center of Torah in Eretz Yisrael. However, certain obstacles arose that prevented the founder of Chassidus from fulfilling his greatest dream. Instead, he turned to his brother-in-law, Rav Avraham Gershon, and asked him to go in his place.

This great scholar was only too willing to comply. His love for Eretz Yisrael was enormous and he left immediately to settle in the city of Hevron. His love for the Holy Land was embodied in the following statement:

Chazal in Gemara Menachos 44a said, ‘One who rents a house in the Diaspora is free from the obligation of affixing a mezuzah for 30 days. Only after that period of time is he obligated. If one, however, rents a house in Eretz Yisrael, he must affix a mezuzah immediately.

Military Courts Chief to Consider Imposing Israeli Law in Judea and Samaria

Thursday, November 29th, 2012

President of the military court in the West Bank Colonel Aharon Mishnayot says he will promote an initiative to apply Israeli Penal Law in Judea and Samaria, where military security laws and Jordanian criminal law have been in effect since 1967, Haaretz reports this morning.

Since the Israeli occupation of Judea and Samaria is still considered temporary, the Jordanian penal code is still the law of the land, together with some 1700 military orders that have been added over the years. Nevertheless, court procedure and the rules of evidence are followed as they are in Israel, based on a military order to that effect.

Security laws are by far more stringent in Judea and Samaria than they are in Israel, in order to cope with terrorism-based felonies. For instance, murder is punishable by death in Judea and Samaria (the law was never implemented), compared to life in prison in Israel. Attempted murder gets life imprisonment compared to 20 years in Israel. On the other hand, Jordanian law does not punish a man who rapes his wife. The two codes also differ on the rights of detainees and on detaining and interrogating minors.

Pointing out that Colonel Mishnayot is a resident of Efrat, in Judea, Haaretz reports that recently, as chief of the military courts across the green line, he has been promoting the idea of legal reform that would apply the full Israeli Penal Law in the territories under his jurisdiction.

Mishnayot is careful to emphasize that his aim is not to introduce a de facto annexation of Judea and Samaria, but to put an end to instances of injustice stemming from the differences between the codes which often contradict each. He proposes to use a military decree to impose Israeli law in the “territories,” a factor which would be a barrier before an unwanted slippery slope toward annexation.

Haaretz notes that Israeli law already applies in Jewish towns in Judea and Samaria, and new laws enacted in Israeli are automatically applicable in those areas. Israelis who commit felonies in J&S are tried in Israeli courts according to Israeli law.

Real estate law, on the other hand, is a true legal nightmare currently, being comprised of a seemingly random hodgepodge of Turkish, British, Jordanian, military and Israeli laws, a fact which on occasion is being used by forces hostile to Jewish settlement in the area to annul legal transaction and uproot legal residents.

The IDF spokesman’s office pointed out that the decision on Mishnayot’s proposal will be made in time by those in charge of legal issues in the area.

After A Few False Starts, A Match Made In Heaven

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

I almost never met the man I married.

No, I am not from a very strict chassidishe home where dating is taboo and a brief meeting suffices before the engagement is announced. My husband and I actually dated for a few months, by which time my parents were beginning to grow concerned and the neighbors were having a heyday gossiping about us. But if not for a significant helping of siyata dishmaya, we never would have managed to get together in the first place.

First of all, I was only redd to my husband on the rebound. My brother-in-law had been learning in Lakewood for many years and was in a prime position to scout out prospective chassanim for me. He did some research, came up with a very promising candidate, approached the boy, and suggested the shidduch. Bingo! The bachur was interested in pursuing the shidduch, except for one minor hitch: He had just started dating another girl. I was next in the queue – except that my turn never came. Baruch Hashem, he ended up getting engaged to the girl he was seeing.

So it was back to the drawing board for my brother-in-law. He mentioned the dilemma to his wonderful chavrusah of many years and the two of them brainstormed together. Actually, they just raised their eyes a row or two ahead of them in the huge beis medrash and spotted the chavrusah’s first cousin. He had serendipitously just returned to the U.S. from learning in the finest yeshivos in Eretz Yisrael, in order to start the shidduch parshah. After a brief interlude of “botteling,” the deed was done; they had decided to set up the sister-in-law with the cousin.

The bachur readily approved of the suggestion, and the ball quickly passed to my court. Ordinarily, after past dating blunders, I was generally very fussy and discriminating about the boys I dated, and usually came armed with an exhaustive list of questions and demands, one more trivial than the next. He should not be too tall or too short, too thin or too heavy, beards were definitely out, etc.

This time, however, I either forgot or skipped the interrogation, and accepted the suggestion without launching an FBI investigation. Had I followed my usual pattern, we probably would not have made it to the first step.

The next hurdle was the boy’s name. I had no problem with his unique and cool-sounding first name, but my two very yeshivish brothers were up in arms. That is, until they read that week’s sedrah and encountered that very name in black on white. They then offered a sincere apology along with their blessings.

I later found out that when my mother-in-law was in the hospital following my husband’s birth she had asked her mechanech husband to bring her something to read. He did. A Chumash! She read through several parshiyos and ended up selecting a biblical name that was far from run-of-the-mill.

Kishmo kein hu, like his unusual name, my husband had likewise always been unique in many ways. Following the orchestrations of the exalted Shadchan on High, he also became uniquely mine.

The rest, as they say, is history.

How in Losing a Congressional Race I Found More of Myself

Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

A few hours ago I lost my bid to unseat Congressman Bill Pascrell in New Jersey’s Ninth District. But thank G-d, I’m in a good place and miraculously in a good frame of mind. I’m writing this late at night to capture my thoughts and feelings after investing approximately seven months of my life in this endeavor.

Firstly, believe it or not, I don’t feel sadness but contentment (although I can’t predict how I’ll feel in the coming days). Why contentment and relief? I set out to accomplish certain goals, and though I wish I had been more successful at advancing them, I feel we met many of those goals and I’m grateful to G-d for having made it through the campaign with a positive message.

First, I wanted to be a voice for universal Jewish values in politics. For years I had felt America was becoming obsessed with talking about gay marriage rather than heterosexual divorce. Abortion rather than men respecting women and replacing the recreational nature of sex with something of its sacredness. Contraception rather than the joy of children. I wanted to bring something of the joy of Jewish values to supplant some of the austerity of the Christian social sexual values which have come to dominate our social discourse and divide our nation.

I also wanted to run an ideas-based campaign that focused less on fundraising and more on novel policies that could address the values rot in American culture. I didn’t want to talk only about economics, deficits, and national debt, but the value of human dignity that accrues through self-reliance, self-sufficiency, and economic independence.

Most of all, I wanted to demonstrate that religious Jews, running campaigns based on Jewish wisdom and values and founded on a platform of a proud Jewish identity, can compete as viable candidates in politics and in every other sphere of American life. From the constant, positive, national attention our campaign has thank God garnered, we have shown that being an orthodox, committed Jew is not in any way a hindrance or limiting factor.

I knew from the beginning that running in a race where Democrats outnumbered Republicans four to one was like climbing a political Mt. Everest. But it was the journey that mattered.

And here is what I have learned. Running for public office has a profound maturing effect on one’s character. You have to wake up every morning and figure out how will you maneuver to deliver your message through all the noise and clutter of the media and the friction of politics. It toughens you up and sharpens your instincts. It humbles you and makes you utterly dependent on all the people around you. People you might, in your arrogance, have otherwise overlooked are now your masters. Every single one matters. And whether they embrace you or reject you, it is always they who are important with you being subordinate.

Abraham Lincoln, on a day that happens to be my birthday (November 19), gave the Gettysburg Address where he spoke of government of the people, by the people, and for the people. For once, I wanted to experience what it was like to be ‘of the people.’

Never once in my campaign did anyone make me feel that being a Rabbi meant I could not be their candidate. True, many of the Arab-Americans in our district challenged my position on Israel. But they always did so with respect and hospitality. (Please read my column on all the people I met in the race).

The Republican party, which suffered a huge defeat on so many levels tonight, needs to make some serious changes. They cannot highlight the social sexual issues which distract us from fixing so many of America’s real social problems, like increasing narcissism on the part of our youth, a catastrophic divorce rate, the portrayal of women in much of the media as a man’s plaything, the absence of a year of national service, the increasing loss of intellectual curiosity on the part of much of the electorate as shallow reality TV shows make us think less, and our addiction to material objects to bring us happiness. We also have to deal with immigration in a compassionate and sensitive manner. True, people who come here illegally are breaking the law and being unfair to all those who wait to enter by legal means. But before we throw the full book at them – and let me be clear that they should not be breaking the law – let’s at least understand that so many of them do so to feed their babies or to send money back to very poor families. They are breaking the law, but that does mean that they are criminals in the usual sense of the word. Their humanity has to be preserved at all times and we have to find a way to deal with 12 million undocumented workers, many of whom have made America their home for many years. Not to address this problem is not only to risk further electoral defeat, but it is to compromise our values of compassion, even as we rightly insist on the vital framework of law.

Finishing my campaign with a positive energy and dignity, even as I keep the door open to the possibility of further political involvement, also allows me to put some of the unavoidable awkwardness of partisanship – much as I have tried to avoid it – behind me. Two hours after my defeat my dear friend and brother Mayor Cory Booker of Newark came to my home to hang with me and cheer me up. We had a great time discussing all the things that connect us, like a deep love and spiritual friendship of twenty years, without politics being on the agenda.

Now is the time for America to come together and fix its problems. I fought hard against Bill Pascrell. But when I called him tonight I told him he will be my Congressman and I bow fully to the majesty of the magical democratic system under which we are all so privileged to live. Likewise, President Obama continues as my President. I don’t agree with both men on many things. But I will work with them to create an America that is unified and that is fully focused on being the light of liberty, prosperity, and freedom to every corner of the earth.

God bless all of you and God bless America.

Gaming the System

Monday, November 5th, 2012

One of the more troubling issues for me about the current right-wing push for all of their students to learn Torah full time for as long as possible (well into their marriage and long after having a number of children to support) is the way in which this is financed.

I have long ago expressed my disagreement with this policy as it is currently applied. The idea of directing every single male in all of Jewry into a life of Torah study as the ideal (to the exclusion of any other productive endeavor) is anathema to the very idea of a Jewish nation.

I am not going to go into the details as to why I feel that way in this post other than to say that I do not believe God wants His people to not fully utilize all the individually different talents He has granted them. Every individual Jew is different with talents in a broad range of different fields. They ought to choose those fields where their talents lie.

For those whose talents are uniquely geared to Torah study – that is the best use of their time. But for those whose talents are suited elsewhere, they should find out what they are, utilize them that way and thus make a far greater contribution to God, Judaism, and the Jewish people.

The Lakewood ideal is to sublimate those talents into full time Torah study.

One of the terrible consequences of this push for every male to spend his life learning Torah is the material cost. This is most acutely felt in Israel. But Americans who do this aren’t exactly living the good life either. Learning full time means they do not earn any money outside of a meager stipend a Yeshiva like Lakewood pays. Those funds cannot possibly support them enough to put a roof over their heads, put food on the table, send their children to private religious schools (even those with very low tuition) and other expenses required just to live a bare-bones modest lifestyle.

While it is true that many Kollel wives work to support their husbands they rarely make enough to support their very large families. Sometimes there are parents and in-laws that help. But that too is not enough, and is drying up a source of income with every succeeding generation. More than ever young people are being convinced to spend their lives in a Beis HaMedrash well into their prime earning years.

One of the ways Lakewood helps its Avreichim is by teaching them how to game the system. By this I mean applying for every possible federal dollar available to students who need financial aid to continue their advanced studies beyond high school. One of the most commonly used federal programs is the Pell Grant.

The Pell Grant was created 40 years ago by then Senator Claiborne Pell to provide financial aid to low income students enabling them to access higher education. While these Avrechim do apparently qualify under Pell Grant guidelines I nevertheless find this to be a misuse of the system.

I do not accuse them of stealing from the government. But there is no way that the Pell grant was ever intended to be used as supplemental income. Which is for the most part how it is used.

A lengthy article in the Forward has taken a closer look at this situation. Here are some of their troubling observations.

Said Heather Valentine, vice president of public policy at the Council for Opportunity in Education put it:

“It’s not just about creating the access to higher education… It’s about making sure that students are… graduating and getting placed in jobs.”

I think that Lakewood and the rest of the Yeshiva world that promotes full time learning understands this. This is how they have addressed the issue:

Proponents of yeshiva education point out that critical thinking and argumentative skills that develop while poring over Talmud — not to mention grueling day-long study sessions broken only for prayer and meals — serve students well for careers in many professions, particularly business and law.

In her book, “Heart of the Stranger: A Portrait of Lakewood’s Orthodox Community,” Botein-Furrevig said the current CEO of BMG (Lakewood), Kotler’s grandson Aaron Kotler, told her that BMG has “a successful job placement service” for graduates and that many students go on to careers in “business, the rabbinate, academia, medicine, finance, law or technology.”

Is this not Gneivas Daas (deception)? I have no doubt that there have been and still are students who have attended Yeshivos like Lakewood and have gone on to a wide variety of successful careers like those mentioned by Lakewood CEO, Rabbi Aaron Kotler.

But to imply that they have a successful job placement service in the fields of medicine, law and technology when that is not the case is simply wrong.

I believe the opposite is true. With the exception of helping their students find jobs in Chinuch or similar jobs, they do nothing to support students seeking careers in any of those fields.

They don’t even approve of schools like Touro and consider a lifestyle outside of learning to be less than desirable. I will never forget the remarks Lakewood Rosh HaYeshiva Rav Malkiel Kotler made along those lines about Dr. Bernard Lander – founder of Touro upon his passing

I understand the need for Lakewood and similar Yeshivos to help their students find legitimate and legal sources of financial aid. But I do not understand misleading the public about how these schools live up to the expectations of helping their students find decent careers – when doing so is anathema to its philosophy.

If that isn’t Genivas Daas, I do know what is. Need based stealing does not justify doing it. Even if it is done for the lofty goal of learning Torah.

Visit Emes Ve-Emunah.

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