News / Middle East

Islamist Candidate Likely to Face Former PM in Egypt Runoff

Egyptians look at newspapers displayed at a kiosk outside the Al-Fatah Mosque in Cairo, May 25, 2012. Egyptians look at newspapers displayed at a kiosk outside the Al-Fatah Mosque in Cairo, May 25, 2012.
x
Egyptians look at newspapers displayed at a kiosk outside the Al-Fatah Mosque in Cairo, May 25, 2012.
Egyptians look at newspapers displayed at a kiosk outside the Al-Fatah Mosque in Cairo, May 25, 2012.
VOA News
Egypt's presidential race appeared headed on Friday to a decisive and polarizing runoff between the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate and another with strong ties to former President Hosni Mubarak’s regime.

Preliminary counts from Egypt's first free presidential race show the Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi in the lead and former prime minister and secularist Ahmed Shafiq a strong second.

The runoff, to be held on June 16-17, would offer Egyptians a stark choice between candidates from divergent paths.

Morsi was not his Islamist group's first choice for its presidential candidate. But he got the job when the Brotherhood's lead candidate was disqualified and then became a front runner in a show of the group's political muscle.

During the campaign, Morsi delivered fiery speeches and vowed his presidency would be based on Islam but not be a theocracy.

Shafiq was Mubarak's last prime minister before he lost power in last year's pro-democracy protests.

The former Air Force commander was appointed prime minister in hopes of appeasing the popular revolt. But because of that connection to Mr. Mubarak, he is viewed with some suspicion by activists involved in the 2011 movement and polarized voters.  

Final results will not be announced until Tuesday.

A victory for one of the secularist candidates would mark a significant turn from parliamentary elections just six months ago when more than 70 percent of voters cast ballots for Islamist parties.

With some key pockets of voting remaining to be counted, independent candidate Hamdeen Sabahi also appears to have fared well and could gain on Shafiq. He rose steadily in opinion polls over the past week, attracting voters who wanted neither an Islamist or a former regime figure.

Some of the other 12 candidates who fared well include Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh, a moderate Islamist supported by some liberals, leftists and minority Christians, and former foreign minister Amr Moussa, a secularist who served under Mr. Mubarak  

VOA correspondent Elizabeth Arrott says voters are generally pleased with how election officials have handled the ballot-counting.

"In the polling stations themselves, they appear to be going through by hand and this has been one of the key things. Everybody has been very glad that they are doing it that way, By having observers watching them be counted in polling station by polling station, it's much, much harder to commit fraud on any large level."

Whoever wins faces massive challenges. Egypt's economy has collapsed as the key tourism industry dried up, crime has increased and labor strikes have proliferated.


Some information for this report was provided by AP.

You May Like

Video Experts Warn World Losing Ebola Fight

Doctors Without Borders says world is losing battle against Ebola, unless wealthy nations dispatch specialized biological disaster response teams More

Video Experts: Rise of Islamic State Significant Development in Jihadism

Many analysts contend the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years More

US-Based Hong Kongers Pledge Support for Pro-Democracy Activists

Democracy advocates call on Chinese living abroad to join them in opposing new election rules for their home territory More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Cha Cha Cohen
May 26, 2012 12:27 PM
Egyptians should not vote ex P.M. he is only acting as a hypocrit!Egyptians has suffered for a long time in the hand of the ex-regime!! They should use their head for their better future!!!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearancei
X
Elizabeth Lee
September 02, 2014 8:57 PM
Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Larger Than Life Chinese Lanterns Make Southern California Appearance

Chinese lanterns with a long history are lighting up in 21st century style at the Los Angeles County Fair in southern California. Visitors can see traditional lanterns that hang, but also lanterns in the shape of animals, iconic landmarks and many other objects, all created by artisans from a place in China known for its lanterns. Elizabeth Lee has the details from the fair in the city of Pomona.
Video

Video Experts See Rise of ISIS as Significant Development

The Islamic State’s rise seems sudden. It caught the U.S. by surprise this summer when it captured large portions of northern Iraq and spread its wings in neighboring Syria. But many analysts contend that the group - which grew out of al-Qaida in Iraq - has been rebuilding for years. VOA's Jela de Franceschi takes a closer look at the rise of ISIS and its implications for the Middle East and beyond.
Video

Video Israel Concerned Over Syrian Rebels in Golan

Israeli officials are following with concern the recent fighting between Syrian rebels and government forces near the contested Golan Heights. Forty-four U.N. peacekeepers from Fiji have been seized by Syrian Islamist rebels and the clashes occasionally have spilled into Israel. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video Ukraine Schools Resume Classes, Donate to Government Forces

A new school year has started in Ukraine but thousands of children in the war-torn east are unable to attend because of ongoing clashes with pro-Russia rebels. In Ukraine's capital, patriotic education has become the norm along with donations to support injured security forces fighting to take back rebel-held areas. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video US Detainees Want Negotiators for Freedom in North Korea

The three U.S. detainees held in North Korea were permitted to speak with foreign media Monday. The government of Kim Jong Un restricted the topics of the questions, and the interviews in Pyongyang were limited to five minutes. Each of the men asked Washington to send a representative to Pyongyang to secure his release. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti has our story.
Video

Video Turkmen From Amerli Describe Survival of IS Siege

Over the past few weeks, hundreds of Shi'ite Turkmen have fled the town of Amerli seeking refuge in the northern city of Kirkuk. Despite recent military gains after U.S. airstrikes that were coordinated with Iraqi and Kurdish forces, the situation remains dire for Amerli’s residents. Sebastian Meyer went to Kirkuk for VOA to speak to those who managed to escape.
Video

Video West Africa Ebola Vaccine Trials Possible by Early 2015

A U.S. health agency is speeding up clinical trials of a possible vaccine against the deadly Ebola virus that so far has killed more than 1,500 people in West Africa. If successful, the next step would be a larger trial in countries where the outbreak is occurring. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
Video

Video Survivors Commemorate 70th Anniversary of Nazi Liquidation of Jewish Ghetto

When the German Nazi army occupied the Polish city of Lodz in 1939, it marked the beginning of a long nightmare for the Jewish community that once made up one third of the population. Roughly 200,000 people were forced into the Lodz Ghetto. Less than 7,000 survived. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, some survivors gathered at the Union League Club in Chicago on the 70th anniversary of the liquidation of the Lodz Ghetto to remember those who suffered at the hands of the Nazi regime.

AppleAndroid