At a joint press conference on Thursday, three prominent public figures announced their withdrawal from Egypt's Constituent Assembly, tasked with drafting a new constitution. The three figures are: Abdel Galil Mostafa, general coordinator for the National Association for Change reform movement; constitutional law expert Gabr Nassar; and Christian thinker Samir Marcus.
The three men justified their decision by claiming that the 100-member assembly's composition, announced on Tuesday, was "no different" from that of the previous Constituent Assembly, which was nullified by administrative court order in April.
In a joint statement, the three men accused the new assembly of being "sectarian" in nature, since it was divided between Islamist and civilian powers and parties.
They went on to assert that the new assembly violated the previous administrative court order since it includes no less than 20 MPs, while, according to the court order, the Constituent Assembly should not include parliamentarians.
Mostafa, Nassar and Marcus were elected to the assembly by members of parliament last Tuesday. They are only the latest members to walk out of the constitution-drafting body to protest the perceived monopolisation of the assembly by Islamist political forces.
The move follows the withdrawal earlier this week of representatives of most liberal and leftist parties, such as the Free Egyptians party and the Egyptian Social Democratic Party, which gave up their respective assembly seats to make way for female, Christian and young representatives.