EU presses Cairo on elections

Dec. 9, 2010 at 4:05 PM
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LONDON, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- The British government and members of the international community call on Cairo to respond to election concerns, an EU official said.

Egyptian authorities are under fire for allegations that the ruling National Democratic Party interfered in parliamentary elections by stuffing ballot boxes and intimidating members of the opposition.

Catherine Ashton, the top foreign affairs official at the European Union, called Cairo to task on the allegations.

"I encourage the Egyptian authorities to respond to these concerns," she said in a statement released through the British Foreign and Commonwealth Offices. "The EU will continue to call on the Egyptian government to permit domestic and international monitors to observe future elections and remains ready to offer assistance in that regard."

The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt's largest opposition group, pulled out of a second round of voting because it viewed the election as fixed.

Mohammed ElBaradei, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate turned Egyptian opposition leader, said he was considering a political alliance with the Muslim Brotherhood in an effort to challenge President Hosni Mubarak, who has served since 1981.

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