Egypt's Tamarod, liberal forces team up to counter Islamist parties

Tamarod has been actively lobbying for a nationwide election coalition that groups Egypt's liberal, secular and leftist parties and forces to counter Islamists.

Egypt's Tamarod, liberal forces team up to counter Islamist parties

World Bulletin / News Desk

The political lobbying movement Tamarod on Sunday formed an election coalition with 13 little-known political parties with the declared aim of crushing Egypt's Islamist parties in next year's parliamentary elections.

"We have given Islamic fascists a slap on the face on June 30 when millions of people took to the streets to demand an end to their regime," Hassan Shahin, a senior Tamarod leader, told a press conference after meeting with the heads of the 13 parties.

Tamarod spearheaded mass protests on June 30 which were used by the army to justify its July 3 ouster of elected president Mohamed Morsi.

"We promise to give them another slap on the face in the next parliamentary elections," Shahin said.

Egypt will hold its first post-Morsi parliamentary elections between February and March of next year, Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy announced Friday.

The legislative elections are part of an army-imposed roadmap for the post-Morsi transitional period.

The roadmap also includes amending the 2012 constitution and holding presidential polls.

Tough mission

Tamarod has been actively lobbying for a nationwide election coalition that groups Egypt's liberal, secular and leftist parties and forces to counter what it calls "Islamic fascism".

The National Salvation Front, which includes several leading liberal and leftist parties and political forces, was reportedly contemplating the idea.

Apart from the tough task for forming the election-time united front, such a coalition would still have to counter the popularity of the country's Islamist forces, including the Salafists who supported Morsi's ouster.

The Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafists had managed to win most of the seats in the last parliament, which was dissolved by the Constitutional Court in June 2012, days before Morsi came to power.

"I don't think the Brotherhood is a big challenge for us," said Gamal al-Tohami, the head of the Human Rights and Citizenship Party, which has accepted to join the new Tamarod-led coalition.

"The Brotherhood used to win the elections by exploiting the poverty of the people, but Egyptians have already opened their eyes to the reality of this group," he told Anadolu Agency before the press conference.

Other party leaders agreed that the coalition will coordinate the number of candidates fielded in the elections and in which constituencies.

"We just want the next parliament to be an honest reflection of the spirit of the June 30 revolution," said Mohamed al-Nabawi, another Tamarod leader.

"We urge all Egyptians to rally behind this coalition so that the revolution can win at the end," he added.

Last Mod: 11 Kasım 2013, 09:40
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