Salafist leader Abu-Ismail launches new political party

Ahram Online, Wednesday 27 Feb 2013

Hazem Salah Abu-Ismail, who was disqualified from standing in last year's presidential election, launches Salafist Raya Party

Salafist preacher Hazem Abou Ismail in Tahrir square (Photo: Reuters)

Disqualified presidential candidate and influential Salafist preacher Hazem Salah Abu-Ismail launched a new political party on Tuesday.

The Salafist Raya Party has not been officially registered by the party affairs committee at the Supreme Court, but it hopes to put forward candidates in parliamentary elections in April, said a statement on the party's Facebook page.

“Thank God for the success he has brought us. The time has come to launch, we have been patient for so long hoping for the victory of our message,” the statement added.

The party's Facebook page includes an application from for new members.

Raya is one of a number of Salafist parties to emerge in Egypt since the January 25 Revolution, including the Salafist Call's Nour Party, the Salafist Front’s People's Party, and the Watan Party.

The Watan Party, recently established by ex-members of the Nour Party and lead by its former chairman Emad Abdel-Ghafour, has said it will form an electoral alliance with Abu-Ismail’s party in the parliamentary election.

The Nour Party, which won around 23 percent of the seats in the 2012 parliamentary election, has said it is not holding talks with any party about an electoral alliance at this time, but has said explicitly it will not ally with the Muslim Brotherhood as it did in the last parliamentary poll.

Short link: