News / Middle East

LIVE BLOG: Egyptians Push Reform in Landmark Election

A young voter shows with pride proof she took part in Egypt's first widely contested presidential election, May 23, 2012. (Yuli Weeks/VOA)
A young voter shows with pride proof she took part in Egypt's first widely contested presidential election, May 23, 2012. (Yuli Weeks/VOA)
Kate Woodsome, Mohamed ElshinnawiJessica Stahl
Millions of Egyptians are casting ballots this week in the first truly contested presidential election in almost six decades.
 
About 50 million people are eligible to vote in the two-day process that began Wednesday, a process that marks the first time Egypt has voted for a new leader since former president Hosni Mubarak took office more than 30 years ago. Twelve candidates representing the “old guard” tied to Mubarak, Islamists, liberals and left-wing activists are vying for the top spot.

Egypt’s election is considered a major step forward in the path to reform after a popular uprising forced Mubarak from office in February 2011.

Activists took to the streets demanding “bread, freedom and dignity.” Although they achieved their first goal, to dispose of Mubarak, many Egyptians are still waiting to see social justice, a smooth transition from military to civilian rule, and an end to endemic corruption.

Islamist parties have already won control of both chambers of the parliament. This week’s presidential election, which may go into a run-off next month, will determine if Islamists will completely dominate Egyptian government.

This liveblog, powered by Storify, follows the events as they unfold.


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