December 19, 2014
Egypt's presidential election to be held on May 26 and 27
Egypt will hold the first round of its presidential election on May 26 and 27, the country's election committee said today.
Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the general who deposed elected Islamist President Mohamed Morsi in July, is widely expected to win the election.
But the Islamist opposition views him as the mastermind of a coup.
Sisi was seen as the most influential figure in an interim administration that has been cracking down hard on Mursi's Muslim Brotherhood and other opponents in the last nine months. The Brotherhood, Egypt's best organised political party until last year, has been banned and driven underground.
The vote will go to a second round in June if the first-placed candidate does not by a wide enough margin. The organising committee did not say what this margin was during a televised news conference.
Sisi is widely expected to win comfortably. He enjoys solid support from privately- and state-run media.
So far, the only other candidate for the presidency is leftist politician Hamdeen Sabahi, who came third in the 2012 election won by Morsi.
Sisi stepped down as defence minister and army chief in order to announce his candidacy last Wednesday.
Candidates may conduct their election campaigns between May 3 and May 23, the spokesman for the committee in charge of organising the elections said in a televised news conference.