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World News

Pro-Sisi party in commanding position in Egypt's parliamentary polls

FILE PHOTO: Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi speaks during a joint news conference with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis at Maximos Mansion in Athens, Greece, November 11, 2020. REUTERS/Costas Baltas

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt’s Mostaqbal Watn (Nation’s Future) Party took a commanding lead in parliamentary polls on Sunday as the election commission announced results from a second round of voting.

Pre-selected lists headed by the party, which strongly supports Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, won all 284 seats allocated for the 596-seat chamber through a winner-takes-all system.

Its candidates also won 59 of the 73 seats contested by individual candidates that have so far been declared by the commission.

Remaining individual seats will be decided in run-offs later this month and in early December. Sisi can appoint 28 legislators directly.

Turnout in the two rounds of voting in an election that began on Oct. 24 was 29% so far, according to the election commission.

Many candidates and parties filed legal complaints to the commission alleging electoral fraud, but all have so far been dismissed. Some have also taken complaints to the courts.

The commission’s head, Lasheen Ibrahim, appealed to Egyptians to participate in the run-offs, urging them not to listen to rumours spread by “enemies of the homeland”.

Parliament was already controlled by Sisi supporters, but Nation’s Future has emerged as a dominant force and won nearly 75% of contested seats for Egypt’s newly recreated Senate in August.

Sisi has overseen a sweeping crackdown on political dissent since leading the removal in 2013 of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohamed Mursi, who was freely elected in 2012 before mass protests engulfed his rule.

Reporting by Mahmoud Mourad, Writing by Aidan Lewis, Editing by Timothy Heritage

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