Egypt on Wednesday appointed a new public prosecutor after the resignation of his controversial predecessor, a judicial source said.

"The Supreme Judicial Council decided to approve the nomination of Hisham Barakat," the source told AFP, adding that Abdel Meguid Mahmud had resigned on Tuesday.

The controversial former prosecutor had said on Friday that he would step down, days after being reinstated, citing possible conflicts of interest in future prosecutions.

A longtime prosecutor under former dictator Hosni Mubarak, Mahmud was sacked by now deposed president Mohamed Morsi in November as part of a decree in which the Islamist head of state granted himself sweeping powers.

The decree was eventually repealed under intense pressure from street protests, but the decisions stemming from it were protected by the constitution that was passed in December.

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