World Bulletin/News Desk
Egypt has barred five local NGOs from monitoring this week's constitutional referendum over alleged links to the Muslim Brotherhood of ousted president Mohamed Morsi.
In a statement, the Higher Electoral Commission (HEC) said it disqualified the five groups over loyalty to the Brotherhood.
The HEC said it issued permits to 62 local NGOs to monitor the vote, due on January 14-15.
The barred groups are; Al-Taliaa Center for Legal Development and Studies; Ana Al-Masri for Social Development; Beit al-Elaa; Swaseya Centre for Human Rights and Countering Anti-Discrimination, and Cairo Center for Democratic Culture.
The five were among hundreds of NGOs which assets had been frozen under a September court ruling banning the Brotherhood.
Last month, the Egyptian government designated the Brotherhood as a "terrorist" group following an attack at a security headquarters in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura that killed 16 people.
The government blamed the attack on the Brotherhood, which vehemently denied any involvement.
The vote on an amended version of the 2012 constitution is the first benchmark in a roadmap imposed by the army following its July 3 ouster of Morsi.
The National Alliance for the Defense of Legitimacy has urged voters to boycott the referendum, which it describes as "illegitimate."Last Mod: 12 Ocak 2014, 15:32