Under an interim constitutional declaration released Monday, the military council retains the power to make laws and budget decisions until a new constitution is written and a new parliament elected. The declaration says Supreme Council members "shall decide all matters related to military affairs, including the appointment of its leaders." The president has the power to declare war, it says, but only "after the approval" of the Supreme Council.
Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, whose Carter Center observed the elections, which issued preliminary findings about the runoff -- said Tuesday that he was "deeply troubled by the undemocratic turn" in Egypt's transition.
"The dissolution of the democratically elected parliament and the return of elements of martial law generated uncertainty about the constitutional process before the election," he said in a written statement. "The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces' new Constitutional Declaration, in which they carve out special privileges for the military and inject themselves into the constitution drafting process, violates their prior commitment to the Egyptian people to make a full transfer of power to an elected civilian government."
More than 800 people died and 6,000 were wounded during the uprising that ended Mubarak's 29-year rule in February 2011.
The ex-president and his former interior minister, Habib al-Adly, were convicted of ordering security forces to kill anti-government protesters and this month were given life terms.
But other top aides -- as well as Mubarak's two sons, who had been tried on corruption charges -- were acquitted.
Mubarak became president after the in October 1981 assassination of his predecessor, Anwar Sadat. Mubarak ruled Egypt with an iron hand and as a staunch ally of the United States, which gives the nation $1.3 billion a year in military aid.
Prior to his sentencing, Mubarak was already suffering from health problems; he attended court on a gurney.
Citizens were cynical or fatalistic about the Mubarak health scare Tuesday.
Othman, the Cairo real estate agent, referred to the health scare as a "dishonest staged play." She said she thinks rumors have been spread "to divert attention from election results." El Gamal, the Cairo student, said she believes the latest accounts about Mubarak's health were staged to evoke "sympathy from the street."
Whatever happens to Mubarak in the short term, he is "finished," Abdel-Fattah said. "Mubarak died a year and half ago as far as I'm concerned," the human resources manager said.