Egypt’s interim leader on Tuesday swore in the first Cabinet since the military ousted the Islamist president, giving members of the country’s liberal movements key positions and naming three Christians and three women, their highest numbers in an Egyptian government.
The new government is led by Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi, an economist. Army chief Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who ousted Mohammed Morsi on July 3, retains his post as defense minister and also took the position of first deputy prime minister, an additional title given to defense ministers in the past.
The Cabinet of more than 30 ministers does not include any members of Islamist parties — a sign of the deep polarization over the removal of Morsi, the country’s first freely elected president. The interim president’s spokesman had earlier said posts would be offered to Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood, but the group promptly refused.