Egypt Court Suspends Next Month Election

8 Mar

Egypt Court Suspends Next Month Election

Local Editor

An Egyptian court on Wednesday ordered the suspension of parliamentary elections scheduled to begin in April, opening a legal battle likely to delay the vote and deepening the political that has polarized the nation for months.

The new confusion surrounding the election underlined the paralysis gripping Egypt, between political deadlock, infighting among state institutions, a faltering economy and a wave of protests, strikes and clashes against President Mohammad Mursi and his Muslim Brotherhood that has spiraled for months around the country.

In the Suez Canal city of Port Said, the scene of heavy clashes between protesters and police that have left six dead since Sunday, the violence entered a fourth day, dragging in the military. Protesters hurled stones at police firing tear gas, as army troops struggled to keep the two sides apart.

Mursi’s supporters and some in the public exhausted by the turmoil viewed the parliamentary elections as a step toward bringing some stability.
They further accused the opposition of stirring up unrest to derail the voting. But the opposition had called a boycott of the vote, saying Mursi must first find some political consensus and ease the wave of popular anger.

The new court ruling is unlikely to defuse the tension, bringing the dispute into the judiciary, which has repeatedly been used by the various sides in Egypt’s political battles.
Meanwhile, the head of security in Port Said was sacked, security officials told Agence France Presse.
“Mohsen Radi was relieved of his duties and transferred to the prison services department in Cairo in response to demands by residents and to help calm the situation,” one of the officials said.

The unrest in the Suez Canal city, fuelled by January death sentences handed down to football fans over deadly rioting last year, flared again on Sunday, with six people, including three policemen, dying in the clashes.

Source: News agencies, Edited by

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