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Egypt high court rules legislative bodies were illegally elected

Egypt's highest court, the Supreme Constitutional Court (SCC) [official website], on Sunday held that the country's legislature and constitutional panel were illegally elected. While the constitutional panel has already dissolved, the legislature's upper house, the Shura Council [official website, in Arabic], will not be dissolved until the parliament's lower chamber is elected later this year or in early 2014. The legislature's lower chamber will be dissolved in June. Although the Shura Council is traditionally a consultative part of legislation, these recent changes will force [BBC article] it to become more actively engaged in the country's legislation.

This ruling is the latest episode stemming from the Egypt Revolution [JURIST backgrounder] in 2011. Last month Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court found provisions of the nation's revised parliament and election law invalid [JURIST report] under the Egyptian constitution. In April several Egyptian opposition groups filed a lawsuit [JURIST report] demanding the government open up the draft budget for public debate. Also in April Egypt's Justice Minister Ahmed Mekki resigned [JURIST report] in response to both supporters and opponents calling for his resignation.

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