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Opposition to unite in event of snap presidential poll: Egypt's ElBaradei

Unlike last year's presidential election, Egypt's political opposition will throw weight behind single candidate if it succeeds in forcing early polls, opposition figurehead Mohamed ElBaradei asserts at Culture Ministry

Ahram Online, Sunday 16 Jun 2013
Senior opposition figure Mohamed ElBaradei arrives to speak with anti-Mursi protesters made up of intellectuals and artists inside Egypt's Ministry of Culture during their sit-in protest against Egypt's new Minister of Culture Alaa Abdel Aziz and what demonstrators claimed are increasing influence of the Muslim Brotherhood over the Ministry of Culture, in Cairo June 16, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)
Views: 2894
Views: 2894

If planned 30 June anti-government protests are successful in forcing early presidential elections, Egypt's political opposition will have only one candidate to represent it this time around "unlike the last elections" one year ago, reform campaigner Mohamed ElBaradei said Sunday.

ElBaradei made the statements during a brief visit to a sit-in currently being held by dozens of Egyptian artists and intellectuals outside culture ministry headquarters in Cairo's Zamalek district to protest the appointment of Culture Minister Alaa Abdel-Aziz.

The former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency added that his earlier decision not to run for top office was "final," stressing he would not run in any upcoming presidential polls.

ElBaradei went on to urge Egyptians to participate in the planned 30 June demonstrations, which will call for snap presidential elections and the dismissal of President Mohamed Morsi, who won Egypt's first-ever free presidential polls last summer.

Amr Moussa and Hamdeen Sabbahi, leaders of Egypt's opposition National Salvation Front umbrella group alongside ElBaradei, came in third and fifth place respectively in last year's first post-Mubarak presidential elections.

On 5 June, dozens of prominent artists and intellectuals broke into culture ministry headquarters where they declared an open-ended sit-in until the newly-appointed culture minister was replaced.

Protesters issued a statement calling for the removal of Abdel-Aziz, who they accuse of "embarking on a plan to destroy national culture."

A grassroots anti-Morsi petition drive – called the 'Rebel' campaign – was launched in May and has been endorsed by most opposition parties and figures.

The campaign aims to collect 15 million citizens' signatures in support of a 'withdrawal of confidence' in President Morsi and demand early presidential elections.

The campaign, which in late May announced that it had collected seven million signatures, has called for mass protests on 30 June, which will mark the end of Morsi's first year as president.

Campaigners accuse the Morsi administration of "failing to implement policies to improve the life of ordinary people."

Leading figures from the Muslim Brotherhood, the group from which the president hails, along with other Islamist groups, have condemned the campaign and accused its members of "infringing on the popular will."

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18-06-2013 02:40am
You lost the Elections get over it
Now wait until the next elections like a good Democratic country is supposed to.
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Sam Enslow
17-06-2013 10:11am
JFK for Egypt
I never enjoyed the people of Egypt more than I did during the revolution. What I saw in Tahrir represented the Egyptian identity -not the freak show put on by some politicians. Baradei was correct when in the beginning he said the next president of Egypt should be between 40-50 years old. It is time to pass the torch to the next generation of Egyptians. Egypt needs a president who will capture the spirit of the revolution and work with the people to make Egypt the nation it can be. It will be a difficult job, but the people of Egypt can do it and will do it. A good possibility might be Youssef. He is smart, a doctor, is willing to joke about Egypt's problems, willing to face Egypt's problems, and willing to discuss things with the people of Egypt. He would also be smart enough to bring into government people who are experts in their fields and be willing to listen to them. Just an idea.
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17-06-2013 09:26pm
This will NEVER happen! The "leaders" are too full of themselves to allow anyone but THEMSELVES run for President. THis has been their scheme all along anyway.
17-06-2013 05:54pm
A Prayer For Destruction of Egypt
Your hopes are recipe for destruction of Egypt. You don't joke about national problems. Journalists are good speakers and comedians make people forget a while of their sufferings. These people can talk until the cow comes home but they will never have a real grasp of the real problem. May Allah forbid your idea.

17-06-2013 04:08am
finally some great thinking!!
finally they get organized & coordinated!! great thinking, UNITY IS WHAT WILL CARRY OUT THE GOALS OF THE REVOLUTION!!My prayers & best wishes are with you all!!
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17-06-2013 02:02pm
at last MB will Win Insha Allah
Egyptian are no longer stupid they will choose the right path

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