Representatives from the Salafi Al-Watan Party met with their counterparts from the moderate Islamist Al-Wasat on Monday to discuss Al-Wasat’s new “crisis aversion” initiative.
Al-Watan spokesperson Yasser Abdel Moniem told Daily News Egypt there would be another meeting this Thursday to finalise an agreement between the two parties, but that there were currently no details on this meeting available.
“They mainly discussed Al-Wasat’s initiative for getting Egypt out of the current crisis,” Abdel Moniem said.
Al-Wasat’s initiative is a four-point plan based on President Mohamed Morsi dismissing Prime Minister Hesham Qandil’s government and appointing a new one until elections for the House of Representatives could be held.
The new constitution specifies that the majority party in the lower house of parliament forms the new government, but since an administrative court’s suspension of the elections last week it is unclear when a new lower house would convene.
The moderate Islamist party is calling on all political groups to meet and agree on three candidates for the premiership. Morsi would choose from among these three. The new prime minister would then consult with all the parties before naming their cabinet.
Political groups participating in the initiative would then agree to support the new government and not to withdraw their representatives until the House of Representatives is elected.
Parties that withdraw cabinet ministers will lose the right to be consulted when the prime minister attempts to replace the outgoing minister.
The initiative also calls on participants to agree a set date for the parliamentary elections and for the date to be at least six months after the new government’s formation. The new government’s main priority would be to organise these elections.
Finally, Al-Wasat called for dialogue between all political players regarding all issues of contention. The initiative will include an agreement considered binding for all signatories.
The party said it would try to reach out across the political spectrum, including attempts to negotiate with the main secular opposition bloc, the National Salvation Front (NSF).
“No one from Al-Wasat has reached us yet but in any case the problem is not with us, it’s with the presidency, and Al-Wasat is one of the parties allied with the presidency so maybe they should talk to them,” said NSF spokesperson Khaled Dawoud.
Dawoud added that the NSF would only join initiatives sharing their demands for a change of government, the removal of the Prosecutor General, and constitutional amendments. Only one shared demand, he said, was not sufficient to ensure NSF participation.