In Depth

Who is Adly Mansour, Egypt's 'Mystery Man' new president?

Low-profile judge sworn in as interim leader owes his most recent promotion to President Morsi

adly-mansour.jpg

ADLY MANSOUR, the "little-known" judge chosen to be Egypt's interim leader following the removal of President Mohamed Morsi, has been sworn in. But who is Mansour, why has he been chosen and is he just a puppet whose strings will be held firmly by the military? Here are five key questions about Egypt's new leader. Who is he? The man handed the "unenviable task of shepherding Egypt to its next presidential and legislative elections" is a 67-year-old father-of-three, says Al-Jazeera. He was appointed chief justice just days ago by Morsi, the man he's replacing. In fact, he's gone from being deputy chief justice to chief justice to president in less than a week. Mansour was born in Cairo in 1945 and graduated in law from Cairo University in 1967. He also studied in Paris. CNN calls him a "mystery man" and he's not a familiar face even in Egypt. He could "probably have walked through one of the huge opposition protests that swept the country on Sunday prompting the military's dramatic intervention without being recognised". Why did the military choose him? Mansour will "establish a government that is strong and diverse", according to Egypt's top military officer General Abdul-Fattah al-Sisi. Analysts suggest Mansour's "low-key demeanour" could be the real reason he was picked by army commanders. David Hartwell, a Middle East and North Africa analyst, told CNN: "He [Mansour] represents what the military needs, a fairly low-profile but respected technocrat." Is he president of Egypt? Not really.  Mansour will not hold "ultimate authority", says Tarek Masoud, an associate professor of public policy at Harvard University. He told the Foreign Policy website that Mansour is "not the president of Egypt in the same way that Morsi or Mubarak were presidents of Egypt". The best analogy is probably Sufi Abu Taleb, who served as acting head of state for eight days following the assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981. Will Morsi's supporters accept him? That's unlikely given the heightened tensions in Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood are likely to accuse Mansour of being part of the judicial conspiracy against them, Hartwell told CNN. "However that's unlikely to carry weight. He is fairly balanced and has made legally sound decisions in the judiciary." How long will he be in power? That's hard to say, but fresh elections are expected to be held within the next few weeks. At a press conference today al-Sisi did not mention the length of the transition period or when elections will be held.

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