(JNS.org) Egypt’s Supreme Council of the Armed Forces has endorsed a presidential run by the country’s powerful defense minister, General Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, reported Egypt’s state-run news agency MENA on Monday.
Earlier in the day, Egypt’s interim president, Adly Mansour, issued a decree promoting el-Sissi from the rank of general to field marshal—the highest Egyptian military honor—in preparation for el-Sissi to step down in order to run for president.
Since coming to power as Egypt’s de-facto leader in July, el-Sissi has led a widespread crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood and jihadist groups in the Sinai Peninsula. Former President Mohamed Morsi, along with several dozen top Muslim Brotherhood officials, are set to go on trial for aiding Islamic terror groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah.
At the same time, el-Sissi has also been criticized by human rights groups and some liberal opposition members. Nevertheless, many Egyptians back el-Sissi in his crackdown on terror, and he remains a widely popular figure.