Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Muslim Brotherhood to run in poll

Egypt's banned opposition group the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) is expected to stand in a third of the seats in next month's parliamentary elections. The group won 20 per cent of the seats in parliament in 2005, but this time round MB said it would contest 169 of more than 500 seats available.

The group's success in the 2005 elections surprised the Egyptian government and it has since paid greater attention to the group's activities, aiming to curtail them by arresting some of the group's key figureheads. MB's leader Mohammed Badie said he wanted to encourage a more open and fair vote and added that if rigged it would cast a shadow over the 2011 presidential elections.

"We ask all Egyptians to stand firm against any attempt to rig the elections and we call on the government to ensure a fair election," said Badie.

It is yet unclear whether President Hosni Mubarak, who has ruled Egypt for 30 years, will stand for a sixth term in office. Former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA), Mohamed ElBaradei, has worked with MB to achieve electoral reform and has argued that boycotting parliamentary elections would deny the government its power. However, a spokesperson for MB has said that the group believes that standing would provide a chance for a fairer Egypt.

Source: BBC News

For more news and expert analysis about Egypt, please see Egypt Politics & Security.

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