EU urges Egypt to follow pledges in wake of referendum

             By Faruk Zorlu </p>  <p>ANKARA (AA) - The European Union on Wednesday called on Egypt to adhere to the rule of law after Egyptians voted yes for a package of constitutional amendments on Tuesday.</p>  <p>&quot;The EU recalls Egypt’s international and regional commitments with respect to the rule of law and an independent judiciary, freedom of assembly and expression, and the rights of participation of its citizens,&quot; Maja Kocijancic, the EU spokeswoman for foreign affairs, said in a statement.</p>  <p>It also &quot;expects Egypt to fully adhere to these commitments,&quot; Kocijancic said. </p>  <p><p>The referendum opens the door for President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to rule over Egypt until 2030 as one of the amendments allows his term in office to be extended from four to six years and also makes it possible for him to be re-elected.</p>  <p>In addition, the president will be able to appoint one or more vice presidents and will be given the authority to designate their duties, dismiss them or accept their resignations.</p>  <p>Last week, Egypt’s parliament approved a proposed constitutional amendment extending the duration of presidential terms from four to six years.</p>  <p>It will also allow al-Sisi to eventually run for a third term in office.</p>  <p>Egypt’s current constitution, ratified in 2014, allows the president to hold office for a maximum of two four-year terms.

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