Egypt: Parliament extends emergency laws by 2 yrs.

Egypt's parliament on Sunday approved a two-year extension to emergency laws that have been in place since 1981, despite a growing chorus of criticism from opposition groups. The People's Assembly voted 287-to-91 to extend the laws, which were due to expire at the end of May. The measures, instituted after the assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, give security forces broad powers to arrest and detain suspects. Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif told legislators the extension is important to the government's effort to combat terrorism, the official Middle East News Agency reported.