Egito promove mudanças nas Forças Armadas

O chefe das Forças Armadas do Egito, o marechal de campo Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, ordenou uma mudança em cargos militares nesta segunda-feira, disse a agência de notícias estatal Mena, substituindo o comandante encarregado das tropas no norte do Sinai e de partes do Delta do Nilo, local onde ocorreram alguns dos piores ataques rebeldes nos últimos tempos.

AE, Agência Estado

17 de março de 2014 | 17h41

O major-general Ahmed Wasfi deixará o seu posto como comandante de tropas do norte do Sinai, duas províncias no Canal de Suez e três províncias no Delta do Nilo, segundo a Mena. A área é conhecida como o 2º Exército de Campo. Wasfi foi nomeado chefe de treinamento para as Forças Armadas. Ele será substituído em seu antigo posto por seu chefe de equipe, major-general Mohammed el-Shahat.

A reformulação conduzida por el-Sissi também incluiu a substituição do comandante da região sul, que inclui várias províncias na fronteira com o Sudão, e a transferência do chefe de assuntos de oficiais para o cargo de assessor do ministro da Defesa.

A mudança ocorre em meio à expectativa de que o chefe das Forças Armadas, El-Sissi, anunciará a sua candidatura à Presidência do país. Duas autoridades militares familiarizadas com as alterações disseram que elas integram uma remodelação comum para introduzir novos nomes às zonas de combate. Os funcionários falaram em condição de anonimato por não estarem autorizados a discutir a reforma. Fonte: Associated Press.

16:57 ML--Egypt, 4th Ld-Writethru,875

Internacional

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Egypt military chief reshuffles commanders

Eds: Updates with details of the reshuffle in military commanders. Restore

previous material. Corrects figure of civilian death compiled by activists

By SARAH EL DEEB

Associated Press

CAIRO (AP) _ Egypt''s military chief ordered a limited reshuffle in military

officers Monday, the state news agency reported, replacing the commander in

charge of troops in northern Sinai and parts of the Nile Delta where he has

been at the forefront of fight against a spreading insurgency by Islamic

militants.

The reshuffle by military chief Field Marshal Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi also

included the replacement of the commander of the southern region, which

includes several provinces down to the border with Sudan.

Maj.Gen. Ahmed Wasfi was moved from his post as commander of troops in

northern Sinai, two provinces along the Suez Canal and three provinces in the

Nile Delta, the state news agency MENA said. The area is known as the 2nd

Field Army.

Wasfi was appointed head of training for the armed forces, MENA said. He was

replaced in his post by his chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Mohammed el-Shahat. A

replacement for el-Shahat in the chief of staff post was also named.

The reshuffle comes amid expectations that the military chief, el-Sissi, is

expected to announce his candidacy for president. No date for the vote has

been announced yet, but is expected by April. El-Sissi is widely expected to

win if he runs.

Wasfi was the most prominent figure moved in the reshuffle. Often called the

``Lion of Sinai'''' by his supporters, he has been cited in the media in recent

months as a possible candidate to join the higher echelons of the military''s

leadership council.

Appointed head of the 2nd Field Army in the summer of 2012, his forces have

been battling Islamic militants who found a haven in northern Sinai amid

Egypt''s turmoil since 2011. He took the post just before an August 2012 attack

in which militants killed 16 soldiers near the border with Gaza and Israel.

The insurgency has escalated since the military''s July 3 ouster of Islamist

President Mohammed Morsi and subsequent crackdown on his supporters. Militant

attacks have spread from Sinai, with dramatic bombings in several Nile Delta

cities and Egypt''s capital, Cairo, largely targeting military and police.

Authorities accuse Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood of helping militants find

new ground in the northern Sinai peninsula, a claim Morsi and the group deny.

Two military officials familiar with the moves said it is part of a regular

reshuffle to include introduce new blood in combat zones. The reshuffle

detailed by MENA also included replacing the head of officers affairs, who was

appointed as an aide to the defense minister. The officials spoke to The

Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss the reshuffle.

Also Monday, prosecutors referred the youngest son of Morsi to trial on

charges of drug use and possession, an accusation his family dismissed as an

attempt to tarnish their image.

Moumin Salman, a prosecutor in the Nile Delta city of Benha, ordered that

20-year-old Abdullah Morsi, a university freshman, and his friend be tried

before a criminal court. A date has not yet been set for the trial.

According to police accounts, Morsi''s son was arrested with his friend on

March 1 after a local patrol became suspicious of a parked car on the side of

the road on the east edge of Cairo. After a search, the officers told

prosecutors, the police found two rolled hashish cigarettes in their car.

The family said the charges are fabricated and aim to defame Morsi''s family.

Abdullah''s older brother, Osama, told The Associated Press at the time that he

had received warnings from officials that members of the family will now be

targeted for prosecution.

The ousted president has been detained since the military overthrew him in

July following mass protests against him. He has since been put on trial on

several charges, including conspiring with foreign groups, inciting his

supporters to murder protesters, and organizing a campaign of violence in

Egypt. Thousands of members of the Muslim Brotherhood, the group to which

Morsi belongs, have also been arrested and many are facing trials. But his

family has largely been spared the crackdown.

Before he was ousted, Morsi supporters set up two protest camps in the

capital_ one outside east Cairo''s Rabaah al-Adawiya mosque and a smaller one

outside Cairo University in the west _ where they gathered for nearly two

months calling for his reinstatement. Hundreds were killed when security

forces moved to break up the encampments in August.

A government-appointed body assigned to investigate the violence during the

dispersal said Monday it presented a final report of its probe into the Rabaah

dispersal to the country''s interim president, prime minister, top prosecutor

and other officials. It demanded an official investigation.

The National Council for Human Rights had blamed Morsi supporters for shooting

at police, escalating violence that ultimately led to the death of 624

civilians and eight police officers in the area outside the mosque. But the

group also held the security responsible for using excessive firepower and for

failing to protect a safe corridor through which it intended the protesters to

evacuate.

An activist group has compiled a list of 897 civilians klled at Rabaah,

although Morsi supporters insist the toll is much higher. A Muslim

Brotherhood-led coalition said the National Council''s findings were ``a failed

attempt'''' by authorities to get away with the killings.

AP-WF-03-17-14 1956GMT

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