Political parties report further divisions over military council statement

Political parties have reported further divisions over the statement that the military council issued on Saturday, following its meeting with the various political forces to discuss the elections law and the transition to civilian rule.

The statement said that party leaders agreed to amend Article 5 of the elections law to allow political parties and independents to run for parliamentary seats allocated to individual runners. It did not clarify the nature of such amendment.

It also said that the military council agreed to mull suspension of the Emergency Law, and to issue a law that denies political rights to leaders of the dissolved National Democratic Party.

The last paragraph of the statement said the parties agreed to express their absolute support of the council and its role in protecting the revolution.

Members of the Democratic Front Party in Daqahlia tendered their resignations in response to the statement, contending that the party betrayed the people’s demands during the meeting with the military council. However, the president of the party, Saeed Kamel, rejected the resignations.

The Nasserist Party has dismissed Mohamed Abul Ela, who is contesting the presidency of the party, for endorsing the statement. “This is nonsense, for I’m the president,” Abul Ela said, adding that party bylaws assign the presidency to the eldest member if that post is vacant.

Members of the Justice Party withdrew their resignations after Mustafa al-Naggar, the founders’ representative, went back on endorsing the statement. “I leave it to the executive committee to announce its final stance on Tuesday,” Naggar said.

For its part, the National Association for Change accused the parties that signed the statement of waving the people’s rights. “They did so for certain personal gains,” the association said in a statement on Monday.

The Popular Coalition Party said the statement is not binding to parties that did not sign it.

Meanwhile, Mohamed Abul Ghar, president of the Egyptian Social Democratic Party, met with the military council on Tuesday and agreed to sign the statement, after the council agreed to omit the paragraph expressing support for the military council.

Translated from the Arabic Edition

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