UK congratulates El-Sisi for Egypt presidency

Ahram Online , Wednesday 4 Jun 2014

British Foreign Secretary William Hague says Britain is looking 'to President-elect Sisi to take steps to implement the rights contained in Egypt’s constitution'

UK Foreign Secretary William Hague (Photo: Reuters)

In an official statement issued on Tuesday, British Foreign Secretary William Hague congratulated former military chief Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi for becoming Egypt's new president.

He stated that Britain is looking forward to working with El-Sisi's government on strengthening the "broad and productive relationship between both our peoples."

"We look to President-elect Sisi to take steps to implement the rights contained in Egypt’s constitution by opening up political space, especially with regard to freedom of expression and association," Hague mentioned in the statement.

Britain's top diplomat argued that the best way for Egyptians to achieve the goals of the 25 January revolution is through an inclusive political process in which all groups can participate.

Urging a transition towards accountable and democratic governance in Egypt, Hague expressed support to the Egyptian people in their aspiration for greater economic opportunities.

"We are proud to be Egypt’s largest foreign investor and will increase our support for education, research and scholarships, to strengthen prosperity in Egypt and the links between our two countries," Hague concluded.

The Presidential Elections Commission (PEC) declared El-Sisi Egypt's new president on Tuesday evening, confirming that he won 23.78 million votes (96.91 percent of the valid ballots) in the 26-28 May election.

El-Sisi's sole contender, leftist politician Hamdeen Sabahi, collected a modest 757,511 of the votes (3.9 percent).

According to PEC chairman Judge Anwar El-Assi, 25,578,233 Egyptians voted in the elections, a turnout of 47.5 percent. Spoilt votes exceeded the votes for Sabahi, with 1,040,608 invalidated ballots.

El-Sisi appeared on television an hour after he was named the country's new leader to express his gratitude over the election results.

"My emotions are mixed with happiness and aspiration: my happiness for what you have achieved and my aspiration to be worthy of your trust," said the ex-defence minister, who became the country's most popular figure after he announced the ouster of his predecessor Mohamed Morsi last year.

"What was realised in both stages of the roadmap came as a natural result of the sacrifices of the Egyptians in both the 25 January and 30 June revolutions," he said, adding that he is certain that Egyptians are aware of "the threats facing the country".

El-Sisi announced that "now is the time for work," with the future target being to realise the revolutions' goals of freedom, dignity, humanity and social justice.

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