Morsy opposition urges followers to vote no on Egypt constitution
CAIRO — A fractious coalition opposed to Egypt's President Mohamed Morsy urged its followers Wednesday to vote “no” on a contentious Islamist-backed draft constitution, but threatened to boycott the vote altogether if several conditions are not met.
The opposition coalition, known as the National Salvation Front, also urged Morsy to delay the process of adopting a constitution for two to three months so that “a national dialogue that is serious and equitable” can be conducted.
In a statement, the group said it is seeking “an agreement over the constitutional project that assures social-justice democracy and human rights” and is acceptable “to the general public.”
Opposition leaders said they would urge supporters to boycott the vote — which begins Saturday — unless the government guarantees adequate judicial supervision of the process; sufficient security at and outside of polling stations; international observers monitoring votes; completion of the vote in one day; and immediate reporting of the results.
The one-day requirement posed an immediate problem, however. In Egypt, judges must supervise polling sites during elections and referendums. At the moment, some of the country's most prominent judicial organizations have refused to do so.
Because there are not enough willing judges to cover all the polling sites on one day, Egypt's electoral commission — the Higher Electoral Committee — said early Wednesday that voting on the draft charter would take place on two consecutive Saturdays. Ten provinces, including most urban areas, will vote Dec. 15, and the remainder on Dec. 22. Egyptians living abroad were able to vote at Egyptian embassies, starting Wednesday.
The process of drafting the new charter, and the document itself, have revealed a profound gulf in how Egypt's revolutionaries see themselves and their future.Islamists back Morsy on one side, with a loose alliance of liberal, secular, Christian and figures from the ousted regime of Hosni Mubarak on the other side.
Attempts in recent days to bridge the divide have failed.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Burkina Faso army general takes power after president’s resignation
- Airstrikes against Islamic State fail to stop flow of jihadists into Syria
- Missing American siblings found dead in Mexico
- Burkina Faso’s parliament stormed by protesters
- Zambia’s interim president sub-Saharan Africa’s only white leader
- Kurds fighting in Kobani finally get reinforcements
- Everything is America’s fault, Putin says
- Gestapo impostor tricked British fascists, secret files show
- Barricaded lawmakers fashioned ‘spears’ from flag poles in attack on Canada’s Parliament Hill
- European Central Bank fails 25 banks in health check, but problems largely solved
- Clashes erupt at West Bank funeral for teen