Cairo: Egyptian Islamist parties were
leading liberals in the second round of a parliamentary
election, according to an initial count a day after the polls
closed, state media reported on Friday.
The Islamists, who won more than two thirds of the
vote in the first round, are projected to win all three stages
of the country`s first elections since a popular uprising
ousted president Hosni Mubarak in February.
The official Al-Ahram newspaper reported a close race
between the two main Islamist parties, the Muslim
Brotherhood`s Freedom and Justice Party and ultraconservative
The FJP said on its website that it was ahead in the
southern province of Sohag and Giza province, which includes a
large part of the capital.
It said Al-Nur was ahead in the port city of Suez,
with 45 percent of the vote to the FJP`s 25 percent.
The main liberal coalition, the Egyptian Bloc, has so
far appeared to have garnered even fewer votes than it did in
the first round, when it won about 13 percent, the newspaper
The FJP, which was founded by the Brotherhood after
Mubarak`s ouster, had won more than 36 per cent of the vote in
the first round, followed by Al-Nur`s 24 per cent.
In the country`s complex electoral system, voters cast
ballots for party lists, which will compose two thirds of
parliament, and direct votes for individual candidates for the