THE assembly drafting Egypt's new constitution has voted to limit the president's term of office to two four-year terms, ending the system of unlimited tenure during the era of ousted president Hosni Mubarak, who ruled for 30 years.

Members of the assembly approved the article in a final vote before the constitution draft is put to a public referendum within 15 days of the president's ratification.

The president would also need to seek the opinion of the National Defence Council in addition to getting the approval of parliament to declare war.

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The old constitution in the era of Hosni Mubarak, a former air force commander, had only required the approval of parliament. The new article would give the defence council, which includes top officers and civilians, a formal say in such a decision.

Mohamed Mursi is Egypt's first president who does not hail from top military ranks.

Meanwhile, Egypt's opposition says wider strikes are possible against Mursi. An alliance of Egyptian opposition groups pledged to keep up protests and said broader civil disobedience was possible to fight what it described as an attempt to "kidnap Egypt from its people".