Egypt's Morsy taps new military commanders

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy is reshaping his country's military leadership.

Story highlights

  • Egyptian president names navy, air force and air defense force commanders
  • The move comes just days after he shook up the country's powerful military leadership
  • Morsy assumed office June 30 and moved quickly to assert his authority

Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy appointed three new commanders Tuesday, just days after he shook up the country's powerful military leadership.

He tapped leaders to head the navy, the air force and the air defense force, Morsy spokesman Yasser Ali announced on state TV.

The president sent the previous leaders into "retirement" on Sunday, alongside Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi and Lt. Gen. Sami Anan, once the country's top military rulers.

Morsy appointed Staff Maj. Gen. Abdel-Monen Bayoumi al-Terras as head of the air defense force, Staff Vice-Marshal Younes Elsayed Hamed as commander of the air force, and Staff Rear Adm. Osama Ahmed el-Gendy as head of the navy, Ali said.

The fact the announcement came from Morsy directly, and not his defense minister, suggested the president is determined to take control of the military, which has been a mainstay of Egyptian politics for the past 60 years.

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Morsy assumed office June 30 and has moved quickly to assert his authority.

Is Morsy making himself an emperor?

Also Tuesday, the president honored Tantawi, presenting him with the country's top state medal, the Order of the Nile. Anan received the distinguished Order of the Republic medal later in the day.

Both men have been named as advisers to Morsy, the country's first freely elected president. No details of the new posts have been announced.

Tricky game of power

Meanwhile, Egyptian forces continue to battle militants in the Sinai Peninsula, the state-run al-Ahram newspaper reported, citing security sources. One soldier was wounded and one militant was captured in the clashes, the sources said.

Source: Yemen forces attack Defense Ministry

The military campaign was launched after an attack at a border post last week that left more than a dozen troops dead.

Morsy dismissed several security officials and the governor of northern Sinai province in the wake of the attack.

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