- CNTV English - CCTV News

Islamists dominant in Egypt's parliamentary elections

12-05-2011 11:22 BJT

by Li Laifang, Shaimaa Behery

CAIRO, Dec. 5 (Xinhua) -- Islamic parties have become the biggest winners in Egypt's first-round parliamentary vote, results showed on Sunday.

The Islamic fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party captured 36.6 percent of the 9.73 million valid votes, followed by the ultra-conservative Salafist Nour Party, which garnered 24.4 percent.

The two parties together won more than 60 percent of the vote, a strong Islamist showing that surprised secular forces in the Arab world's most populous country.

The High Election Commission said secular Egyptian Bloc came third with around 1.3 million votes, followed by the liberal Wafd Party, which got 690,000 votes. Another Islamic Wasat Party came fifth with 410,000 votes.

Only four independents secured their seats in the first-round vote. The remaining 52 seats for independents would be contested among 104 candidates in the run-off on Monday and Tuesday.

The votes could not show how many seats the parties will grab as final results of the elections, which began on Nov. 28, will be announced in mid-January when the whole elections finish.

However, it is clear that the main competition in the run-off will be between the moderate Freedom and Justice Party and the more radical Nour Party.

The vote for Egypt's lower house was the first since the fall of former President Hosni Mubarak, who was forced out of power 10 months ago amid 18 days of anti-government mass protests. Turnout of the vote exceeded 60 percent.

The new parliament will select a committee to draft a new constitution and play a major role in shaping the country's political future.

"It is not surprising that the Muslim Brotherhood has won the highest number of votes," said Bakr Noha, political scientist at the American University in Cairo.

Since its foundation in 1928, the Muslim Brotherhood has gained a lot of experience and is mature, Noha told Xinhua. "It has engaged itself with programs like health and education for the people. That's why people are loyal to the group."

Noha predicted that, as the results of the first-round vote suggest, the Islamic parties would win 60 percent of the total seats.

The Muslim Brotherhood was officially banned in 1954. After the fall of Mubarak and the dissolution of the National Democratic Party, the group founded the Freedom and Justice Party as its political arm and became the best organized force in Egypt.

However, some experts have expressed their concerns over the domination of Islamic forces in the elections.

"We can't consider the results final as other stages (of the vote) have not been held," said Nabil Zaki, a researcher with the Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies. "But we are afraid some people may be depressed by the domination of Islamic forces on the political scene, and will not vote in the coming stages."

The rise of Islamic forces also raises fears among Coptic Christians, who account for about 10 percent of the country's total population. The minority has often complained about discrimination against them and worries the domination of Islamic forces could change the country's future.

Zaki said the Salafists' doctrines might hurt tourism and banking sectors.

"I do not trust the Islamic forces concerning any promises of a moderate, civil country," he said.

Editor:Zhang Hao |Source: Xinhua

Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program