Presidential hopeful Sabahi (Photo: Al-Ahram)
Presidential hopeful Hamdeen Sabbahi outlined his stance on freedom and democracy, saying he was for a civil and non-religious independent state and against elements of Egypt's current relationship with Israel, at a campaign conference on Sunday.
Sabbahi confirmed although he does not want war with the self-proclaimed Jewish state, he does not agree with the unpopular 1979 Camp David Accords brokered by late president Anwar El-Sadat and Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin.
According to the Nasserist former-MP, his program will transform Egypt's foreign policy into one that works in the country's interest and not purely for other states. He also seeks a unification agreement between Arab countries, similar to that of the European Union.
Sabbahi further stated that freedom does not only mean freedom of expression but also should encompass the right to food, health care, education, employment, housing and proper wages. He added that his program will not allow capital to rule Egypt or for wealth to be concentrated in the hands of one group.
The presidential hopeful confirmed he will not permit a "safe exit" for the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) but a "just exit", where those who violated the rights of the Egyptian people would be held accountable.
A veteran opposition figure and former member of the People's Assembly, Sabbahi is an outspoken critic of the United States and Israel. He is one of the founding members of the pan-Arab Karama Party (dignity).
Sabbahi officially announced his presidential bid in March 2011, opting to run on an independent ticket and not through the Karama Party, presenting himself as "the candidate of the people".
Presidential elections will take place on 23 and 24 May, and the president will be named on 21 June after a runoff voting round on 16 and 17 June.