Egypt's Islamist parties win two-thirds of the votes
EGYPT'S Muslim Brotherhood promised to respect democratic values yesterday, after Islamist parties won two-thirds of votes in the Arab world's most populous state. To the dismay of the secular liberal forces behind February's overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak, Islamist parties dominated the first phase of the election, according to provisional results.
The Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, as expected, emerged with the largest share on 36.6pc of the vote.
Defying expectations, the far more fundamentalist al-Nour emerged in second place on 24.4pc. It is backed by Egypt's growing community of Salafists, adherents of one of the most puritanical strains of Islam. With the moderately Islamist al-Wesat winning 4.3pc of the vote, religious parties are just shy of a two-thirds majority that would give them the power to draft a new constitution without reference to their secular rivals.
However, the Muslim Brotherhood hinted it will not necessarily side with its more extreme allies in al-Nour, raising the prospect that it could ally itself to secular parties. (©Daily Telegraph, London)