Voting is under way in Egypt’s two-day presidential runoff
About 50 million Egyptians are eligible to vote
The election pits Mohamed Morsi against former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik
Cairo (CNN) — Egyptians started casting their ballots Saturday in a presidential runoff that pits two candidates whose platforms are at the crux of the country’s political chaos.
On one side, an Islamist backed by the political arm of the Muslim Brotherhood. On the other, a former air force general who served as the last prime minister in the waning days of Hosni Mubarak’s regime.
And sitting in the background, overseeing the election — and the creation of a new constitution — are the military rulers who have been in control of the country since Mubarak was ousted from power last year.
The biggest question facing the at least 50 million Egyptians eligible to cast ballots in the runoff is what happens after voters decide between Mohamed Morsi of the Justice and Freedom Party, the Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, and former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik.
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Political turmoil in Egypt
Shafik and Morsi emerged from the first round of voting in May to advance to the runoff, in which Egyptian voters are to choose the country’s first democratically elected president.
The runoff election was prompted after a May election failed to produce a winner with a clear majority. Polling sites will be open Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. (2 a.m. ET) until 8 p.m. (2 p.m. ET).
Votes must be counted by Monday, with final results to be announced by Thursday.
The vote comes two days after a high court ruling that dissolved parliament and raised questions about whether the military will relinquish power.
- Blow to Transition as Court Dissolves Egypt’s Parliament – New York Times (nytimes.com)
- Ahmed Shafik: Egypt’s ‘counter-revolutionary candidate’ (edition.cnn.com)
- Ahead of Egypt’s Presidential Runoff, Has the Military Junta Already … – TIME (world.time.com)
- The Egyptian Spring becoming a Tornado (blognovic.com)
- Drescher: Native of Cairo is back for Egypt’s ‘long weekend’ (newsobserver.com)
- Egypt’s Judges and Generals Dissolve the Parliament: Is the Revolution Now Truly Over? (world.time.com)
- Egypt grants military wide arrest powers on eve of controversial ruling (mcclatchydc.com)
- Security Forces Surround Parliament in Egypt, Escalating Tensions (nytimes.com)
- Egypt: court rulings spark outcry on eve of presidential poll – euronews (euronews.com)
- Developing: Egyptian High Court Rules Former Mubarak Minister Can Compete for Presidency (commondreams.org)