Reuters is reporting that Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi has replaced two cabinet ministers with members of the Muslim Brotherhood in a cabinet reshuffle involving talks with the IMF. According to the Reuters report:
CAIRO | Tue May 7, 2013 11:37am EDT (Reuters) – Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi increased the influence of his Muslim Brotherhood over government in a cabinet reshuffle that replaced two ministers involved in crucial talks with the IMF over a $4.8 billion loan. The changes fell well short of the opposition’s demand for a complete overhaul of Prime Minister Hisham Kandil’s administration and the installation of a neutral cabinet to oversee parliamentary elections later this year. It looked unlikely to help build the political consensus the International Monetary Fund is seeking for reforms needed to secure a loan seen as vital to easing Egypt’s deep economic crisis – an unaffordable budget deficit and a plunge in the value of its currency. The government is struggling to seal a deal that would require it to implement austerity measures. Kandil, a technocrat appointed premier last year, named nine new ministers. They included Amr Darrag, a senior official in the Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, as planning minister. The outgoing minister, Ashraf al-Arabi, had played a central role in the IMF talks. Another Brotherhood member, Yehya Hamed, was named investment minister, and Ahmed el-Gezawi, an FJP member, took over agriculture, lifting the movement’s share to around a third of the cabinet’s 35 portfolios.
Read the rest here.
The Washington Institute has published a bio of Amr Darrag (???? ????) who like many in the Muslim Brotherhood, was educated in engineering and received a Doctorate in soil mechanics and foundations from Purdue University in the US in 1987:
Darrag is a founding member of the Freedom and Justice Party and its current secretary-general in Giza. He also serves as secretary-general of the Constituent Assembly, which will write Egypt’s next constitution. From 1987 to 1988, he was a senior engineer for Erdman and Associates Inc. in Orlando, Florida. He also served as vice president of the Staff Club at Cairo University from 2000 to 2009. Like other Brotherhood leaders, he has denied that Copts are being persecuted in Egypt and rejects the use of the term “sectarian tensions.”
President Mohammed Morsi also obtained a PHD in engineering in the US where he taught as an assistant professor at California State University Northridge in the early 1980s.