Egypt referendum highlights divisions within society: ElBaradei

Ahram Online, Sunday 16 Dec 2012

Senior opposition figure Mohamed ElBaradei says constitutional referendum highlights divisions within Egyptian society, claims poverty and illiteracy provide fertile ground for mixing religion with politics

Leading member of opposition umbrella group Mohamed ElBaradei (Photo: Reuters)

Preliminary results from the first phase of Egypt's constitutional referendum show there are increasing levels of division within society, senior opposition figure Mohamed ElBaradei has said.

"Poverty and illiteracy provide fertile ground for trading with religion," ElBaradei said via Twitter early on Sunday.

However, he also said there is also a growing level of political awareness among Egyptians and a belief that the goals of the revolution are still attainable.

The first phase of Egypt's constitutional referendum took place on Saturday across ten governorates.

The Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party has claimed 56.6 per cent voted 'Yes' and 43.5 per cent voted 'No'.

The National Salvation Front is the main opposition coalition formed after the draft constitution was approved by President Morsi on 1 December. Headed by ElBaradei and former presidential candidates Hamdeen Sabbahi and Amr Moussa, the front called for a 'No' vote in the poll. The front has disputed the FJP's figures and announced that 66 per cent voted 'No'. 

ElBaradei is also the leader of the Constitution Party.

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