Sunday, May 06, 2012
Elections bring Egypt to the edge of abyss
About a year after the fall of Hosni Mubarak's regime, the crisis in Egypt has brought the country to the edge of abyss.
The political crisis escalated shortly after the Muslim Brotherhood decided to appoint its own candidate for presidency. This decision came after the Brotherhood, together with the Salafists, obtained an overwhelming majority in the Egyptian parliament.
Shortly after this decision it became clear that the Brotherhood and the Supreme Council for the Armed Forces (SCAF), which has governed Egypt since Mubarak's fall, are not on the same page any more. Their differences involve key issues such as the drafting of a new constitution and the power of the Egyptian parliament.
In addition, negotiations regarding a much needed IMF loan ended without a deal because of lack of political support for acceptance of the IMF conditions.
Another complicating factor is the lack of progress in drafting the new constitution. Tensions further increased after several presidential candidates, including Khairat al-Shater, the Muslim Brotherhood's candidate, and Salafist leader Abu Ishmail, were disqualified as presidential candidates.
The disqualified candidates appealed against the decision of the supervisory body of Egypt's election committee, but their appeals were dismissed. The Muslim Brotherhood then simply appointed a new candidate: Mohammed Mursi, the leader of the Freedom and Justice Party.
Last Wednesday unknown assailants shot dead 11 Salafist protesters in Cairo’s Abbaseya neighborhood. The Salafist protesters demonstrated against the disqualification of Abu Ishmail.
On Friday new clashes broke out in the same neighborhood prompting the army to impose a curfew. Most Egyptian media accused the SCAF of being behind the bloodbath in Abbaseya.
Several political parties, among them the Muslim Brotherhood Freedom and Justice Party announced new demonstrations in Tahrir Square and decided to boycott meetings with the SCAF.
Read the full article here: