Egypt's Supreme Presidential Elections Committee (SPEC) early Thursday afternoon formally announced its final list of approved candidates for next month's presidential elections. The list, which includes a total of 13 contenders, contained no surprises.
Egypt's election committee confirmed that Hosni Mubarak's last prime minister would run in a presidential election, reversing its decision to eject him over a law drawn up by Islamists.
Frontrunners include independent Islamist candidate Abdel-Moneim Abul-Fotouh; ex-FM and former Arab League chief Amr Moussa; Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP); Nasserist candidate Hamdeen Sabahi; and Mubarak-era aviation minister Ahmed Shafiq.
The list also includes socialist candidate Abul-Ezz El-Hariri; leftist labour lawyer candidate Khaled Ali; Islamist thinker Mohamed Selim El-Awa; reformist judge Hisham El-Bastawisi; former intelligence officer Hossam Khairallah; ex-police officer Mohamed Fawzy; Egypt Kanana Party candidate Mahmoud Hossam; and former foreign ministry official Abdullah El-Ashaal.
Shafiq returned to the race on Thursday after appealing an earlier decision to apply a "disenfranchisement law" barring figures associated with the former regime from participating in political life.
Last week, the SPEC, citing legal reasons, excluded five candidates from the race: the Brotherhood's Khairat El-Shater; Salafist preacher Hazem Abu-Ismail; ex-intelligence chief Omar Suleiman; Ghad Al-Thawra Party head Ayman Nour; and lawyer Mortada Mansour.
Other presidential hopefuls to have been sidelined from the race are: English teacher Ibrahim El-Gharib; former director of antiquities for Upper Egypt Ahmed Awad; ex-general intelligence officer Mamdouh Qutb; Egypt Arab Socialist Party candidate Hossam Khairat; and the Egypt Kanana Party's Ashraf Barouma.
Campaigning will formally begin on 30 April. Elections will take place on 23 and 24 May, with a runoff vote, if necessary, on 16 and 17 June.
The new president will be officially named on 21 June, after which Egypt's ruling military council is expected to formally relinquish executive power to the new civilian administration.
This article was updated on 6 May, 2012