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Winning by losing in Egypt?

With the May 23–24 elec­tions in Egypt just around the cor­ner anoth­er runoff is look­ing like­ly in the pres­i­den­tial race with no clear leader yet to emerge. But one thing is clear: the top Islamist in the race won’t be the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood­s’s can­di­date...sort of.

Instead, it’s the the ‘lib­er­al’ Islamist can­di­idate Abdel Mon­eim Abol Fotouh that some­how man­aged to secure the endorse­ment of the salafists late last month fol­low­ing the mass can­di­date purge that left the salafists with­out a can­di­date. He is also an ‘ex’ Mus­lim Broth­er­hood leader that was expelled from the MB just last year when he pro­ceed­ed to run for office after the MB offi­cial­ly declared that it would not be field­ing a pres­i­den­tial can­di­date (this was, of course, before the MB went ahead and field­ed a can­di­date in spite of their ear­li­er pledges). So just how much dis­tance is there between Mr. Abol Fotouh and the MB? And how on earth did the ultra-fun­da­men­tal­ist salafists end up back­ing the sup­posed ‘lib­er­al’ Islamist that does­n’t appear to favor a strict imple­men­ta­tion of sharia law. That’s a good ques­tion:

NY Times
Sup­port From Islamists for Lib­er­al Upends Race in Egypt
Pub­lished: April 28, 2012

ABU HOMOS, Egypt — Egypt’s most con­ser­v­a­tive Islamists endorsed a lib­er­al Islamist for pres­i­dent late Sat­ur­day night, upend­ing the polit­i­cal land­scape and con­found­ing expec­ta­tions about the inter­nal dynam­ics of the Islamist move­ment.

The main mis­sion­ary and polit­i­cal groups of the ultra­con­ser­v­a­tives, known as Salafis, threw their sup­port behind Abdel Mon­eim Aboul Fotouh, a dis­si­dent for­mer leader of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood known for his tol­er­ant and inclu­sive view of Islam­ic law.

The endorse­ment goes a long way toward mak­ing Mr. Aboul Fotouh the front-run­ner in a cam­paign that could shape the ulti­mate out­come of the revolt that oust­ed the for­mer strong­man, Hos­ni Mubarak.

Mr. Aboul Fotouh’s lib­er­al under­stand­ing of Islam­ic law on mat­ters of indi­vid­ual free­dom and eco­nom­ic equal­i­ty had already made him the pre­ferred can­di­date of many Egypt­ian lib­er­als.

His endorse­ment on Sat­ur­day by the Salafis now makes him the can­di­date of Egypt’s most deter­mined con­ser­v­a­tives, too. Known for their strict focus on Islam­ic law, the Salafis often talk of reviv­ing medieval Islam­ic cor­po­ral pun­ish­ments, restrict­ing women’s dress and the sale of alco­hol, and crack­ing down on hereti­cal cul­ture.

The deci­sion was announced by offi­cials of the preach­ing group the Salafi Call and on the Web site of its allied par­ty, Al Nour. Nei­ther group gave a defin­i­tive rea­son for their pick.

But Salafi lead­ers described their deci­sion in part as a reac­tion against the pres­i­den­tial can­di­date of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, the pow­er­ful and estab­lished Islamist group that now dom­i­nates Par­lia­ment. Though more mod­er­ate than the Salafis, the Broth­er­hood also favors the fash­ion­ing of an explic­it­ly Islam­ic democ­ra­cy in Egypt, and on social and cul­tur­al issues the group is clos­er to the Salafis than Mr. Aboul Fotouh is.


But the Salafi endorse­ment also appeared to pro­vide an unex­pect­ed val­i­da­tion for Mr. Aboul Fotouh’s argu­ment that mix­ing preach­ing and pol­i­tics would be “dis­as­trous” for both Islam and Egypt, as he put it in an inter­view last week with El Rah­ma, a major Salafi satel­lite chan­nel.

Mr. Aboul Fotouh, a physi­cian who led the Broth­er­hood-dom­i­nat­ed med­ical asso­ci­a­tion, was a founder of a 1970s stu­dent move­ment that revi­tal­ized Islamist pol­i­tics here. He was expelled from the Broth­er­hood last year for defy­ing the deci­sion of its lead­ers to bar mem­bers from run­ning for pres­i­dent or engag­ing in pol­i­tics out­side its own polit­i­cal par­ty.


So Mr. Aboul Fotouh was a found­ing mem­ber of the 1970’s stu­dents move­ment in Egypt that was crushed by Mubarak after the assas­si­na­tion of Anwar Sadat. And even Gama’a al-Islamiya(Jama’a al-Islamiya) — one of the mil­i­tant spin­ter groups to emerge from that era — is back­ing him. This is the same group that ter­ror­ized Egypt in the 90’s and even merged with al-Qae­da in 2006(the group denies it but there’s a video that says oth­er­wise). This his­to­ry as a leader from that crit­i­cal era when the MB spit into a larg­er net­work of affil­i­at­ed splin­ter groups might par­tial­ly explain some of Mr. Abol Fotouh’s broad Islamist appeal when all sides agree that there is no mean­ing­ful ide­o­log­i­cal dif­fer­ence between Abul Fotouh and the MB:

Islamist stakes claim to Egypt mid­dle ground

By Tom Per­ry

CAIRO | Mon Apr 30, 2012 3:05pm EDT

(Reuters) — Abdel Mon­eim Abol Fotouh was jailed by Hos­ni Mubarak but has emerged as a front-run­ner for his old job as pres­i­dent of Egypt, stak­ing claim to the polit­i­cal cen­tre in this nascent democ­ra­cy with a mod­er­ate Islamist plat­form that has found broad appeal.

A senior fig­ure in the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood until he part­ed ways with the group last year, he is part of the gen­er­a­tion of Islamist activists that spawned al Qae­da leader Ayman al-Zawahiri. Both doc­tors, they spent time in adjoin­ing jail cells in 1981. For the most part, that’s where the sim­i­lar­i­ties end.

Abol Fotouh presents him­self as a cham­pi­on of mod­er­ate Islam, yet he has been able to win the back­ing of hard­lin­ers thanks part­ly to a polit­i­cal brain which many say sets him apart from the Broth­er­hood. Even some lib­er­als, impressed by his reformist zeal, say they could vote for the bespec­ta­cled 60-year old.


As a stu­dent leader in the 1970s, Abol Fotouh is remem­bered for con­fronting Pres­i­dent Anwar Sadat in a debate, famous­ly telling him he was sur­round­ed by hyp­ocrites.

In 1981, he was arrest­ed by the Sadat gov­ern­ment in a crack­down against dis­si­dents. Under Mubarak, his activism land­ed him in jail twice for a total of more than six years.


Cam­paign­ing under the slo­gan “Strong Egypt”, Abol Fotouh has stressed the need to fin­ish the coun­try’s unfin­ished rev­o­lu­tion by root­ing out rem­nants of the Mubarak era from the state.

He pledges to increase health and edu­ca­tion spend­ing, to make Egyp­t’s army the most pow­er­ful in the region and to turn its econ­o­my into one of the 20 strongest in the world. His pro­gram says he will adhere to Islam­ic law.

Like oth­er can­di­dates, he has called for a review of Egyp­t’s 1979 peace treaty with Israel, which he says was “imposed” on Egypt.

While the Broth­er­hood has faced broad crit­i­cism for alien­at­ing oth­er par­ties in the year since Mubarak was top­pled, Abol Fotouh is cred­it­ed with reach­ing out across the polit­i­cal spec­trum.

His efforts appear to be pay­ing div­i­dends. While the Broth­er­hood’s Mur­si has tried to cast him­self as the only Islamist in the race, Abol Fotouh man­aged to con­vince lead­ing hard­line Salafi groups they should endorse him instead.

The Nour Par­ty, a Salafi group that won a fifth of the seats in par­lia­ment, has endorsed him. So too has al-Gama’a al-Islamiya, a Salafi group that took up arms against the state but dis­avowed vio­lence in 1997.

The Wasat Par­ty, a cen­trist par­ty run by ex-Broth­er­hood mem­bers who left in the 1990s, has also endorsed Abol Fotouh.

A mem­ber of the Broth­er­hood’s exec­u­tive board from 1987 to 2009, Abol Fotouh still com­mands respect in the group. His can­di­da­cy is also endorsed by Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi, a cler­ic held in high regard by Broth­er­hood fol­low­ers.

In terms of ide­ol­o­gy, there is lit­tle dif­fer­ence to me between Mur­si and Abdel Mon­eim. As for the orga­ni­za­tion, of course there is a dif­fer­ence, but the idea is the same,” Hel­mi el-Gaz­zar, a Broth­er­hood mem­ber of par­lia­ment, told Reuters.


That’s how crazy Egypt­ian pol­i­tics has become in the last month. Even Sheik al-Qaradawi is back­ing the ‘lib­er­al’ Islamist in the race. And the MB’s replace­ment can­di­date Mohamed Mor­si — fol­low­ing the ejec­tion of can­di­dates last month includ­ing the MB’s el Shater and the salafist Hazem Salah Abu Ismail — has fall­en behind even a Mubarak-era fig­ure and was polling fourth or fifth going into Wednes­day’s elec­tions:

Egypt pres­i­den­tial race gets new twist: Mubarak-era fig­ure surges
Pres­i­den­tial hope­ful Ahmed Shafik, Hos­ni Mubarak’s last prime min­is­ter, ris­es in the polls days before the elec­tion. He may not win but could become a spoil­er.
By Jef­frey Fleish­man, Los Ange­les Times

May 20, 2012, 9:11 p.m.

CAIRO — The race for Egyp­t’s pres­i­dent is tight­en­ing as a surge by a for­mer prime min­is­ter has raised fresh con­spir­a­cy the­o­ries that rem­nants of deposed leader Hos­ni Mubarak’s regime are angling for pow­er.

The first round of vot­ing begins Wednes­day, but many Egyp­tians are still unde­cid­ed in what is large­ly a con­test between Islamists and two men con­nect­ed to the old regime. The dra­ma has been inten­si­fied by a last-minute swell in pop­u­lar­i­ty for Ahmed Shafik, a retired air force gen­er­al appoint­ed prime min­is­ter in the weeks before Mubarak’s gov­ern­ment fell last year.


Recent polls sug­gest a close elec­tion that will prob­a­bly lead to a runoff. The top con­tenders are Amr Mous­sa, a sec­u­lar­ist and for­mer for­eign min­is­ter, and Abdel Mon­eim Aboul Fotouh, a lib­er­al Islamist. Gains by Shafik and Hamdeen Sabahi, a left-lean­ing nation­al­ist, have jolt­ed the race, high­light­ing vary­ing polit­i­cal ide­olo­gies and grow­ing sus­pi­cions over Islamist can­di­dates.


The expect­ed sce­nario is that Shafik may be a spoil­er, drain­ing votes from Mous­sa and boost­ing Aboul Fotouh, who is strug­gling to appease lib­er­als and ultra­con­ser­v­a­tive Salafis. The enthu­si­asm Aboul Fotouh’s self-described con­sen­sus can­di­da­cy attract­ed months ago has dimin­ished in recent weeks over doubts that he can rep­re­sent such diverse, and often antag­o­nis­tic, polit­i­cal and reli­gious inter­ests.

What is less clear, how­ev­er, is the fate of Mohamed Mor­si, a Cal­i­for­nia-edu­cat­ed engi­neer run­ning as the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood can­di­date. Polls sug­gest that Mor­si has dropped to fourth or fifth place over a back­lash against the Broth­er­hood, which con­trols near­ly 50% of the seats in par­lia­ment, for break­ing polit­i­cal promis­es and its lack of inclu­sion.

But the Broth­er­hood is the best orga­nized polit­i­cal machine in the coun­try. It is respect­ed by many Egyp­tians for its years of oppo­si­tion to Mubarak and a net­work of social pro­grams that stretch from inner-city neigh­bor­hoods to the provinces. Mor­si is like­ly to do well among the poor and Islam­ic con­ser­v­a­tives, whom he has heav­i­ly court­ed at cam­paign stops.


So the MB appears to be poised for a sur­pris­ing­ly poor show­ing in the pres­i­den­tial race over grow­ing sus­pi­cions and con­cerns over the MB’s dom­i­na­tion of Egyp­t’s new government...sort of.


4 comments for “Winning by losing in Egypt?”

  1. I stand corrected....it looks like the MB’s can­di­date might be head­ing for the two-man runoff in June. Turnout has been low­er than expect­ed on the sec­ond day fo vot­ing and that’s the kind of sce­nario that helps the can­di­dates with the largest orga­ni­za­tions:

    Wash­ing­ton Post
    Mus­lim Brotherhood’s can­di­date doing well on day two of Egypt’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tion
    By Ernesto Lon­dono, Leila Fadel and William Wan, Updat­ed: Thurs­day, May 24, 10:35 AM

    CAIRO — As Egyp­tians turned out to vote on the sec­ond day of a land­mark pres­i­den­tial elec­tion Thurs­day, ear­ly indi­ca­tors showed the Mus­lim Brotherhood’s can­di­date tak­ing the lead among the pre­sumed front-run­ners.

    The Broth­er­hood is the most orga­nized and effi­cient polit­i­cal force in Egypt, and Mohammed Morsi’s cam­paign team went so far as to pre­dict a pos­si­ble out­right vic­to­ry, despite the dam­age done to the group’s rep­u­ta­tion after it back­tracked on a pledge not to put for­ward a pres­i­den­tial can­di­date.

    “We are the front-run­ner, and we hope we can con­clude this today and get 50-plus” per­cent, said Mourad Mohammed Aly, a media advis­er to Mor­si, although that out­come remained unlike­ly.

    With turnout report­ed­ly low­er than on Wednes­day, all five front-run­ners voiced opti­mism about their prospects even as sev­er­al acknowl­edged Morsi’s rel­a­tive­ly strong ear­ly show­ing. The cam­paign of for­mer Arab League chief Amr Mous­sa also put Mor­si in the lead, with 25 per­cent of the vote, and Mous­sa just behind him with 23 per­cent, based on exit polls at 13,000 polling sta­tions.


    So it looks like the MB is one step clos­er to com­plete takeover of Egyp­t’s gov­ern­ment at a time when the con­sti­tu­tion is to be rewrit­ten. The next phase of Egyp­t’s nascent democ­ra­cy should be inter­est­ing:

    Mus­lim Broth­er­hood push­ing its reli­gious agen­da more bold­ly
    Asso­ci­at­ed Press
    Updat­ed 09:52 p.m., Fri­day, May 18, 2012

    CAIRO — At a cam­paign ral­ly for the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s can­di­date for pres­i­dent, a hard­line cler­ic and TV preach­er sang Mohammed Mor­si’s prais­es before thou­sands massed in the sta­di­um of an indus­tri­al city in Egyp­t’s Nile Delta.

    “We are see­ing the dream of the Islam­ic Caliphate com­ing true at the hands of Mohammed Mor­si,” the cler­ic, Safwat Hegazy, blared from his podi­um.

    The cap­i­tal of the Caliphate and the Unit­ed Arab States is Jerusalem, God will­ing,” he added, as thou­sands cheered and waved the Broth­er­hood’s green flag, chant­i­ng, “The peo­ple want to imple­ment God’s law.”

    On the cam­paign trail for the pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, now only days away, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood has tak­en a sharp turn right­ward, becom­ing bold­er in say­ing it wants to bring a state where reli­gion and Islam­ic law play a major role — and insist­ing that it has the right to rule.

    As a result, it has moved away from the more mod­er­ate face that it pro­mot­ed since even before the fall of Hos­ni Mubarak 15 months ago. Dur­ing cam­paign­ing for par­lia­ment elec­tions late last year, the Broth­er­hood insist­ed that imple­ment­ing Islam­ic law was not its imme­di­ate pri­or­i­ty, instead speak­ing vague­ly of an “Islam­ic back­ground” to gov­ern­ment. It also sought to assuage fears that it seeks to take over the coun­try by promis­ing to work with oth­er, lib­er­al fac­tions.

    Crit­ics and for­mer Broth­er­hood mem­bers say the greater assertive­ness rep­re­sents the 82-year-old group’s true face, brought by hard-lin­ers who dur­ing the past decades have squeezed out mod­er­ates and tak­en con­trol of its lead­er­ship. Those hard-lin­ers, the for­mer mem­bers say, are more con­fronta­tion­al, more deter­mined to impose Islam­ic stric­tures and less like­ly to share pow­er with oth­ers.


    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 24, 2012, 1:41 pm
  2. Looks like the MB won’t have to win by loos­ing. Just good ol’fashioned win­ning will do.

    Mur­si is going to take it.

    Egyp­t’s pri­ma­ry elec­tion results stun rev­o­lu­tion­ar­ies
    By Nan­cy A. Youssef and Han­nah Allam
    McClatchy News­pa­pers
    Pub­lished: Sat­ur­day, May. 26, 2012 — 12:00

    “Many lib­er­al and left­ist rev­o­lu­tion­ar­ies, who are noto­ri­ous­ly dis­or­ga­nized, said
    they were dis­ap­point­ed – but not nec­es­sar­i­ly shocked – at the pre­lim­i­nary results.
    After all, they said, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s steam­roller elec­tion machine
    boast­ed seem­ing­ly end­less resources and a mas­sive get-out-the-vote cam­paign in
    even the most far-flung provinces.”

    I guess we know the X‑factor that over­came the “noto­ri­ous­ly dis­or­ga­nized” and man­aged
    to bring hun­dreds of thou­sands into the streets to top­ple and 30 year auto­crat. Fun­ny how
    things go to shit when the Intel­li­gence Ser­vices aren’t back­ing you.

    “Rev­o­lu­tion­ary can­di­dates thought the Face­book and Twit­ter com­mu­ni­ty is
    Egypt, which it’s not,” said Emam, the wom­en’s advo­cate.


    Posted by GrumpuRex | May 28, 2012, 11:04 am
  3. @Grumpus: Yep, it’s look­ing like the June runoff is going to be the most depress­ing race that was pos­si­ble giv­en the can­di­dates. Egyp­tians get to choose between giv­ing the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood pret­ty much com­plete con­trol over the gov­ern­ment dur­ing a time when the con­sti­tu­tion is about to be remade OR the they can vote for the guy that ordered the club wield­ing camel thugs last year. Have fun try­ing to find the ‘less­er of two evils’ in that mess.

    It’s too bad they can’t vote for the Greater Evil Greater Evil.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 28, 2012, 4:17 pm
  4. A num­ber of ques­tions have arisen regard­ing the integri­ty of the vote giv­en the some­what sur­pris­ing results last week in Egypt. The 3rd, 4th, and 5th place fin­ish­ers are all alleg­ing wide­spread vote rig­ging, but to no avail. And one of those can­di­dates, the ‘ex’-Muslim Broth­er­hood can­di­date Abdel Mon­eim Aboul Fotouh, said things were so bad that he would have con­test­ed the results even if he had been the win­ner. So there was a clear sense of ille­git­i­ma­cy in the wake of the results. And then Supreme Pres­i­den­tial Coun­cil ruled that out any recount. With­in four days. Per­haps not sur­pris­ing­ly, this did­n’t go over well:

    Angry crowd tar­gets HQ of Egyp­t’s ‘can­di­date for sta­bil­i­ty,’ cit­ing vote fraud
    Ahmed Shafiq, Mubarak’s last prime min­is­ter, has cast him­self as the pres­i­den­tial can­di­date who can restore sta­bil­i­ty to Egypt. But last night’s protests under­score how polar­iz­ing he is.

    By Kris­ten Chick, Cor­re­spon­dent / May 29, 2012


    Pro­test­ers angry at the first-round results of Egypt’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tion set fire last night to the cam­paign head­quar­ters of one of the two can­di­dates who will advance to a runoff, and took to the streets in protest in Cairo and Alexan­dria.

    An angry crowd broke into the build­ing that hous­es the Cairo cam­paign head­quar­ters of Ahmed Shafiq, the last prime min­is­ter under for­mer Pres­i­dent Hos­ni Mubarak before he was oust­ed in last year’s pop­u­lar revolt.

    The vio­lence took place just hours after the gov­ern­ment body over­see­ing elec­tions announced Mr. Shafiq would face Mohamed Mor­si, the can­di­date of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, in a mid-June runoff. The crowd threw cam­paign lit­er­a­ture from inside into the street before appar­ent­ly light­ing fire to part of the build­ing. Fire­fight­ers quick­ly put out the blaze.


    “There was fraud — this nev­er would have hap­pened with­out fraud,” said a pro­test­er who gave his name as Mohamed. A crowd of around 1,000 chant­ed slo­gans against Shafiq, Mor­si, and the mil­i­tary rulers. “I can’t sup­port Shafiq, and I can’t sup­port Mor­si,” he added. Pro­test­ers said they were also angry that they had to choose between a mem­ber of the for­mer regime or a mem­ber of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, which has sought to dom­i­nate the Egypt­ian polit­i­cal scene.

    Yes­ter­day the Supreme Pres­i­den­tial Elec­tion Coun­cil announced it had reject­ed all appeals filed by can­di­dates who alleged that vio­la­tions and fraud had affect­ed the vote count. The elec­tion commission’s deci­sion can­not be appealed. Such a speedy rejec­tion — just four days after polls closed, seem­ing­ly with­out time for a thor­ough inves­ti­ga­tion of the alle­ga­tions — angered some. Can­di­date Abdel Mon­eim Aboul Fotouh, who came in fourth, said he would have reject­ed the elec­tion results even if he had come in first place. He cit­ed vio­la­tions that includ­ed his cam­paign rep­re­sen­ta­tives being kept from observ­ing the vote count­ing, and bribes paid to vot­ers.

    Some ques­tioned the commission’s integri­ty after it dis­qual­i­fied sev­er­al lead­ing con­tenders in April. The head of the com­mis­sion, Farouk Sul­tan, was appoint­ed by Mubarak to head of the Supreme Con­sti­tu­tion­al Court in 2009. Crit­ics say he is a loy­al­ist to the for­mer regime, point­ing to his swift rise to such a lofty post. Though Shafiq was one of those dis­qual­i­fied, the com­mis­sion rein­stat­ed him while deny­ing appeals from oth­ers.


    Well, on the plus side, Jim­my approves...sort of:

    Carter says minor vio­la­tions in Egyp­t’s vote
    SARAH EL DEEB, Asso­ci­at­ed Press
    Updat­ed 12:16 p.m., Sat­ur­day, May 26, 2012

    CAIRO (AP) — For­mer Pres­i­dent Jim­my Carter said Sat­ur­day that mon­i­tors not­ed vio­la­tions dur­ing Egyp­t’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tions but that the vote was gen­er­al­ly accept­able and the irreg­u­lar­i­ties won’t impact the final results.

    The Atlanta-based Carter Cen­ter had 102 mon­i­tors at polling cen­ters across Egypt for the land­mark vote — the first since long­time leader Hos­ni Mubarak’s ouster last year in a mass upris­ing. Pre­lim­i­nary results showed a tight race at the top between the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood’s can­di­date, Mohammed Mor­si, and Mubarak’s last prime min­is­ter, Ahmed Shafiq. The top two fin­ish­ers will advance to the June 16–17 runoff.

    Carter said his group was not able to mon­i­tor the entire process because author­i­ties only grant­ed his mis­sion’s observers per­mits a week before the race. The Carter Cen­ter said in a state­ment that the observers were not able to wit­ness the aggre­ga­tion of the bal­lots, which “severe­ly under­mines the over­all trans­paren­cy of the elec­tion results.”

    The third place fin­ish­er, Hamdeen Sabahi, has demand­ed a recount, cit­ing vio­la­tions that he has yet to dis­close.

    Carter said the vio­la­tions — such as a lack of pri­va­cy for vot­ers and the observers’ lack of access to the final vote count­ing — won’t affect the ulti­mate results.

    “I don’t think the mis­takes and errors and impro­pri­eties that we have wit­nessed in the last few days will have a neg­a­tive impact on the runoff,” he told reporters. How­ev­er, he stressed that his cen­ter is only able to make a “lim­it­ed” judg­ment on the elec­tions because of the lim­its on their mis­sion.


    He said he was hes­i­tant about accept­ing the mis­sion because of the lim­its placed on it, but in the end decid­ed to go ahead with it because he per­son­al­ly has been “deeply involved” in the Egypt­ian tran­si­tion process from the out­set. The Carter Cen­ter also mon­i­tored Egyp­t’s par­lia­men­tary elec­tions, which stretched from last Novem­ber to Feb­ru­ary 2012.

    He said the pres­i­den­tial elec­tion was a “great step for­ward” from those ear­li­er votes, which were large­ly viewed as free.


    Posted by Pterrafractyl | May 29, 2012, 11:11 pm

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