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Westerwelle: Egypt must check fraud claims
Opposition member of National Salvation Front Amr Hamzawy. Photo: DPA

Westerwelle: Egypt must check fraud claims

Published: 24 Dec 2012 13:05 GMT+01:00
Updated: 24 Dec 2012 13:05 GMT+01:00

Germany urged Egypt to get to the bottom of allegations of fraud levelled by the opposition after the adoption of a new, Islamist-backed constitution in a referendum.

"The reports from Egypt fill me with concern," Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said in a statement.

"The new constitution can only meet with acceptance if the process of its adoption is beyond reproach. Allegations of irregularities must therefore be investigated in a quick, transparent and decisive manner."

He said Egypt would only have a successful future "if all social groups reach out to each other".

"Not the power of the street but rather the spirit of compromise and tolerance should determine the way forward for Egypt," Westerwelle said.

Egypt adopted the new constitution with nearly two-thirds support, official media said on Sunday, in a referendum which had been preceded by weeks of sometimes bloody protests.

The secular-leaning opposition alleged that fraud handed victory to Islamists backing the "yes" vote on the charter, which it says limits the freedoms of religious minorities and women.

It said it would appeal against the results.

Approval of the constitution would trigger parliamentary elections in two months' time to replace an Islamist-dominated assembly that was dissolved by Egypt's constitutional court before President Mohamed Morsi's election in June.

AFP/hc

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

14:43 December 24, 2012 by Englishted
Islamists do not have a great history of respecting democracy in fact they have no history in that respect.
15:31 December 24, 2012 by realist1961
The Arab Spring was less about democracy and more about the overthrow of repressive dictatorial regimes. For whatever reason, perhaps wishful thinking, Western governments thought the ensuing chaos would fill the void with order.
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