Egypt rejects appeal of defeated presidential candidate: sources

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 01, 2014 3:08 PM

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt's elections committee rejected on Sunday a defeated presidential candidate's appeal against voting results that gave former army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi a landslide victory, judicial sources said.

Leftist politician Hamdeen Sabahi only got 3 percent of the votes in last week's elections, according to initial results that showed Sisi in the lead with 93 percent of votes. Official results are expected to be announced this week.

The vote came 10 months after the army's ouster of elected Islamist President Mohamed Mursi in July in reaction to protests against his rule.

The army-backed government had since cracked down hard on Mursi's Islamists' supporters killing hundreds and jailing thousands.

On Thursday, Sabahi conceded defeat but said the initial turnout figure of over 40 percent was too high and "an insult to the intelligence of Egyptians." However he said he will accept the final result of the vote.

Sabahi's campaign sent a complaint to the elections committee on Friday objecting to what it said was "the existence of campaigning inside polling stations" by Sisi supporters, among other abuses.

It also appealed to the committee to nullify all votes cast on the third day of polling, which was introduced at the last minute of the second day of the vote on Tuesday in a surprise move to boost low turnout.

Sabahi came third in the 2012 vote won by Mursi, Egypt's first truly elected president who came to power after an uprising in 2011 ended autocratic Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule.

(Additional reporting by Mostafa Hashem, Writing by Yasmine Saleh; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)