Egypt's Appoints New Military Chief of Staff

The move comes a week after militants killed at least 16 security forces in an ambush during an anti-terrorist raid in restive Giza province

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi attends a military ceremony in the courtyard at the Hotel des Invalides in Paris, Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017.
Charles Platiau/AP

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi on Saturday named a new chief of staff of the armed forces.

Al-Sissi issued a decree naming Lt. Gen. Mohamed Farid Hegazy as the country's new military chief, replacing Lt. Gen. Mahmoud Hegazy. The latter was named as Presidential Adviser for Strategic Planning and Crisis Management.

Mahmoud Hegazy had also served as the chairman of a contact group for Libya, among other roles, and the government's point man for managing Egypt's role in arbitrating between factions of that troubled country.

No reason was given for the shuffling of roles between the two men, who are not related.

The move comes a week after militants killed at least 16 security forces in an ambush during an anti-terrorist raid in the al-Wahat al-Bahriya area in Giza province, about 135 kilometers (84 miles) southwest of Cairo. Officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media had reported dozens more killed. The conflicting casualty figures could not be reconciled.

The Interior Ministry also announced its own shakeup, replacing the head of the National Security Agency, the agency's Giza directorate chief, as well as several other top security officials in the area.