Egyptians vote in second day of parliamentary elections

The election is taking place as Egypt faces a slight increase in coronavirus cases, with authorities warning that a second wave of the pandemic lies ahead. (AFP)
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Updated 25 October 2020

Egyptians vote in second day of parliamentary elections

  • Vote is likely to produce a toothless House of Representatives packed with supporters of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sis

CAIRO: Egyptians on Sunday trickled into polling stations on the second day of voting for the country’s parliamentary election amid a slight uptick in daily recorded coronavirus cases.
The first stage of the vote for the lower chamber of parliament began a day earlier in 14 of Egypt’s 27 provinces, including Giza and the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria.
The second stage the vote is scheduled on Nov. 7-8 in the country’s 13 other provinces, including the capital Cairo and the Sinai Peninsula. The voting concludes with runoff elections.
The vote is likely to produce a toothless House of Representatives packed with supporters of President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi that further rubber-stamps his policies, leaving the former military general with almost unchecked powers.
A total of 568 seats in the lower chamber are up for grabs, with more than 4,000 candidates running as individuals competing for half of the seats. Prominent, wealthy government-affiliated power brokers have an advantage.
The other half of elected seats in the chamber are reserved for the more than 1,100 candidates running on four party lists. El-Sisi will name 28 seats, or 5 percent, bringing the total number of seats in the lower chamber to 596.
Some 63 million voters are eligible to vote in the Arab world’s most population nation. The new chamber is expected to hold its inaugural session shortly after final results are announced in December.
The election is taking place as Egypt faces a slight increase in coronavirus cases, with authorities warning that a second wave of the pandemic lies ahead.
Face masks are mandatory at polling centers, which were disinfected before and during the vote, authorities said.
Authorities urged Egyptians to take part in the vote in order to show a high turnout and lend legitimacy to the election.
Only 14.23 percent of voters participated in the Senate election in August for the upper chamber, an advisory body with no powers, which was restored following a referendum last year.


Iran scientist linked to military nuclear program killed

Updated 10 sec ago

Iran scientist linked to military nuclear program killed

  • Fakhrizadeh led Iran's so-called “Amad,” or “Hope” program
  • Israel and the West have alleged it was a military operation looking at the feasibility of building a nuclear weapon in Iran

DUBAI: Iranian state television is reporting that a scientist that Israel has alleged led a military nuclear program in early 2000s has been "assassinated."
State TV Friday cited sources confirming the death of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh.
It said it would offer more information shortly.
Fakhrizadeh led Iran's so-called “Amad,” or “Hope” program. Israel and the West have alleged it was a military operation looking at the feasibility of building a nuclear weapon in Iran. Tehran long has maintained its nuclear program is peaceful.
The International Atomic Energy Agency says that “Amad” program ended in the early 2000s. Its inspectors now monitor Iranian nuclear sites.