Egypt's Morsi says he stands by his decrees

Associated Press
Egyptians carry the body of Gaber Salah, who was who was killed in clashes with security forces, inside a mosque for funeral prayers in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Nov. 26, 2012. Thousands marched through Tahrir square, the birthplace of last year's uprising that toppled authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak, for the funeral procession of Salah. (AP Photo/Thomas Hartwell)
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CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's Islamist president has told the nation's top judges that he acted within his rights when he issued a series of decrees giving him sweeping powers, according to his spokesman.

That stand is likely to trigger a prolonged showdown with the opposition.

Presidential spokesman Yasser Ali told reporters Monday that Mohammed Morsi assured the judges that the decrees did not in any way "infringe" on the judiciary.

Ali's comments signaled Morsi's resolve not to back down or compromise on the steps he announced Thursday, putting himself and a body writing a new constitution above the judiciary.

Morsi's opponents and supporters plan rival rallies on Tuesday in Cairo.

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