Connect with us

World

World News: Egypt to hold referendum; Bloodshed likely: Ahmed Said

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published 

 on 

World News: Egypt to hold referendum; Bloodshed likely: Ahmed Said | The Thaiger
  • follow us in feedly
PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Egyptian factions stage final rallies before referendum
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Supporters and opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi staged final rallies today before a divisive referendum on a new constitution championed by the Islamist leader as a way out of the worst crisis since the fall of Hosni Mubarak.

Cairo and other cities have seen a series of often violent demonstrations over the past three weeks since Mursi assumed sweeping new powers to push through the constitution, which he sees as a vital element of Egypt’s transition to democracy.

At least eight people have died and hundreds have been injured and a leading opposition figure warned of more blood on the streets during the voting tomorrow and next Saturday on a draft the opposition says is too Islamist.

The referendum asks Egyptians to accept or reject a basic law that has to be in place before national elections can be held early next year – an event many hope can steer the Arab world’s most populous nation towards stability.

To bolster support for the constitution, the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, which propelled Mursi to power in June’s presidential election, will assemble at a mosque not far from the president’s palace in Cairo.

A little later in the day, the liberal, secular and Christian opposition will rally in favour of a vote against the basic law outside the palace and in Tahrir Square, symbolic centre of the revolt that toppled Mubarak in 2011.

“During the referendum, I believe there will be blood and a lot of antagonism, so it is not right to hold a referendum,” Ahmed Said of the National Salvation Front told Reuters.

Despite the opposition push for a “no” vote, the measure is expected to pass given the well-organised Muslim Brotherhood’s record of winning elections since the fall of Mubarak. Many Egyptians, tired of turmoil, may simply fall in line.

Solid indication
The first round of voting tomorrow will take place in Cairo and other major cities and could presage the overall result if it is a fairly solid “yes” as many expect.

To provide security for the vote, the army has been deployed in force, with state television showing ranks of soldiers receiving their orders to protect polling stations and other government buildings. About 120,000 troops and 6,000 tanks and armoured vehicles will be deployed.

While the military backed Mubarak and his predecessors, it has not intervened on either side in the present crisis.

The vote has proved hugely controversial, with supporters of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood fighting on the streets with opposition groups.

The opposition says the constitution does not reflect the aspirations of all 83 million Egyptians because it is too Islamist and tramples on minority rights, including those of the Christian community. Mursi’s supporters say the constitution is needed if progress is to be made towards democracy.

While the opposition is telling its supporters to vote “no”, it has also threatened to boycott proceedings if guarantees for a fair vote are not met. But staying away from the process could risk a loss of credibility, political experts say.

Many ordinary Egyptians are well aware of how contentious the constitution is, but simply want to get it out of the way so the country can move ahead to a more stable future.

“Do I like the constitution?” asked Ahmed Helmy, a 35-year-old engineer in Tahrir Square. “No. But I want the referendum to take place so we can get out of this prolonged transitional period that’s making me and millions of Egyptians wish we had left the country.”

— Reuters

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.
Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.



Find more SE Asian News courtesy of The Thaiger.

Broke? Find employment in Southeast Asia with JobCute Thailand. Rich? Invest in real estate across Asia with FazWaz Property Group. Even book medical procedures worldwide with MyMediTravel, all powered by DB Ventures.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

World

England’s self-quarantine rule breakers will receive up to a 10,000 pound fine

The Thaiger & The Nation

Published

on

England’s self-quarantine rule breakers will receive up to a 10,000 pound fine | The Thaiger

England’s self-quarantine rule breakers are receiving up to a 10,000 pound fine, starting September 28, according to British PM Boris Johnson. The fine will be handed down to anyone who tests positive for the virus or has been in contact with someone who has the virus and dodges the rules for self-quarantine. For the first offence, rule breakers will receive a 1,000 pound fine and from there it will rise up to 10,000 pounds for those who repeatedly break the rules. Employers who threaten to fire staff over choosing to self-isolate instead of going to work will receive the maximum fine […]

Continue Reading

Thailand

US accuses Chinese companies of exploitation along the Mekong River

The Thaiger & The Nation

Published

on

US accuses Chinese companies of exploitation along the Mekong River | The Thaiger

The US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is accusing Chinese companies of “exploitative practices” in the Mekong River region after a new partnership has been launched to combat “transnational crimes”. Pompeo named the China Communications Construction Company as one of the big offenders and says the Chinese Communist Party is responsible for the increase in human, wildlife and drug trafficking in the region. He says the new partnership will also strengthen water security for partner countries where China has added to a drought in the region as an upstream damming by China has been carried out in “a completely non-transparent […]

Continue Reading

World

The world’s Top 10 languages, spoken by native speakers

The Thaiger

Published

on

The world’s Top 10 languages, spoken by native speakers | The Thaiger

I battle to speak one language, English, and can barely order my lunch in Thai. And, whilst studying French for 7 years at school, I can only ask a French-speaker for the time or order coffee. Sacre Bleu! Figuring out the world’s most common languages changes over time. And you can be sure the conversation will stir some heated conversation. But the numbers win (which we have refined over the past year). For pop culturalists, we’re sad to report that neither ‘Klingon’ (used by the Star Trek foes) or ‘Minionese’ have made it into the top 10 most spoken languages […]

Continue Reading
Follow The Thaiger by email:

Trending