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losangelesnewstoday.com April 26, 2018


Trump Congratulates Egypt's President On Winning Criticized Election

04 April 2018, 01:08 | Katrina Lee

Egyptian President's Allies Move to Extend His Time in Office

Egypt elections: El-Sisi officially wins 2nd term with 97% of votes

The number of invalid votes at this year's election was a sharp increase than in past contests, where 4.07 percent of the 2014 election and 3.1 percent of 2012 runoff ballots were invalid.

Sisi has said he has no ambition to stay after the end of his second term in 2022 - something the current constitution prohibits anyway.

El-Sissi's backers say he has re-established security in Egypt after the unrest that followed the 2011 uprising, which forced longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak out of power. Then, turnout was about 47 percent - but only after election officials agreed to extend the vote into a third day.

The election has revealed "obvious problems related to participation and the reluctance of young people (to vote)", said a statement from politician Mohamed Anwar Sadat, a candidate who withdrew in January citing intimidation of his supporters.

People who boycotted the election and cannot show a good reason for missing the vote could face a fine of up to 500 Egyptian pounds (22 euros), the electoral commission has warned.

Officials said that if any such incidents took place they were not state-sponsored and extremely limited.

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In 2014, as army chief, Mr al-Sisi ousted Egypt's first freely elected president Mohammed Mursi after mass street protests.

The head of the election authority, which is supposedly independent of the state, hailed Mr Sisi's sweeping victory as a glorious moment for the country.

President Donald Trump on Monday congratulated yet another strongman ruler, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi (above, left), for winning "reelection" despite the suppression of el-Sissi's political opponents.

Earlier the State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said the U.S. "will continue to work to advance our shared objectives" with Egypt, despite its concerns over political freedom.

It comes shortly after Trump faced widespread pushback for congratulating another foreign leader, Russian President Vladimir Putin, who similarly won a race that was broadly criticised as neither free nor fair.



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