Egypt’s Morsi stands by decrees
Egypt’s President Mohammed Morsi struck an uncompromising stand Monday over his seizure of near-absolute powers, refusing in a meeting with top judicial authorities to rescind a package of constitutional amendments that placed his edicts above oversight by the courts.
Morsi’s supporters, meanwhile, canceled a massive rally planned for today to compete with a demonstration by his opponents, citing the need to “defuse tension” at a time when anger over the president’s moves is mounting, according to a spokesman for the president’s Muslim Brotherhood.
The opposition rally was going ahead as scheduled at Cairo’s Tahrir Square.
New policy urged on teen birth control
Doctors should give underage teenagers prescriptions for emergency contraceptives such as Plan B before they start having sex instead of waiting until a young patient’s “plan A” goes awry, the American Academy of Pediatrics says in a new policy statement. It says doctors also should counsel teens on the options for emergency birth control as part of an overall strategy to reduce teen pregnancy.
The academy is issuing the new position paper, published online Monday by the journal Pediatrics, as physicians and other health experts struggle to reduce the nation’s high birthrate among adolescents.
NJ Gov. Christie to seek 2nd term
His popularity surging because of his handling of superstorm Sandy, Gov. Chris Christie announced Monday that he will seek re-election so he has the chance to lead the state through a recovery effort he said will extend past his first term.
“The public needs to know that I’m in this for the long haul, that the person who has helped to lead them through the initial crisis wants to help lead them through the rebuilding and restoration of our state,” he said at a news briefing in Middletown, where he had come to thank first responders and volunteers.
The gubernatorial election is a year from now.
Kidney-transplant pioneer dies at 93
Dr. Joseph E. Murray, who performed the world’s first successful kidney transplant and won a Nobel Prize for his pioneering work, has died at age 93.
Murray’s death in Boston was confirmed Monday by Brigham and Women’s Hospital spokesman Tom Langford. No cause of death was announced immediately.
Since the first kidney transplants on identical twins, hundreds of thousands of transplants on a variety of organs have been performed worldwide. Murray shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1990 with Dr. E. Donnall Thomas, who won for his work in bone-marrow transplants.
UN to vote on Palestinian status
The Palestinians said the U.N. General Assembly will vote Thursday afternoon on a resolution raising their status at the United Nations from an observer to a nonmember observer state, a move they believe is an important step toward a two-state solution with Israel.
Unlike the Security Council, there are no vetoes in the General Assembly, and the resolution is virtually certain of approval. The world body is dominated by countries sympathetic to the Palestinian cause, and the resolution requires only a majority vote for approval. To date, 132 countries — over two-thirds of the U.N. member states — have recognized the state of Palestine.