Egypt voting law proposal prompts outcry from Muslim Brotherhood

[JURIST] The Egyptian opposition Muslim Brotherhood [FAS backgrounder] has promised to fight legislation backed by President Hosni Mubarak [official profile; BBC profile] that would delay local elections in Egypt [JURIST news archive] for an another two years and preserve the ruling party's dominance. The legislation, which only requires an expected approval by the lower house of parliament, would delay local council elections originally required within 60 days after terms expired Tuesday. It is widely thought that Mubarak has pushed for a delay in the elections to prevent further gains by the Muslim Brotherhood, which had a strong showing in parliamentary elections [JURIST news archive] last year. Those elections were marred by violence and fraud that some said prevented the Muslim Brotherhood from gaining additional seats, but Mubarak promised continued reform [JURIST report] after the elections.

The Muslim Brotherhood is officially banned in Egypt [CS Monitor report], so Brotherhood candidates run as independents, although their membership is well known. The Muslim Brotherhood boycotted the previous local elections in 2002, leaving the ruling National Democratic Party [official website, in English] in control of most localities. AP has more.

3:04 PM ET - AP is now reporting that the Egyptian parliament has passed the bill to postpone local elections for two years.

 

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