Egypt to Revise Election Law to Avert Boycott

Posted October 1st, 2011 at 3:10 pm (UTC-5)
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Egypt's military rulers have agreed to amend a controversial election law, after a coalition of political parties threatened to boycott November elections.

The state-run MENA news agency says government officials announced plans on Saturday to revise the measure, which bans political parties from contesting one-third of the seats in parliament.

The law reserves those seats for independent candidates. Critics feared the restriction could make it easier for members of former President Hosni Mubarak's now-banned National Democratic Party to seek office by running as independents.

On Wednesday, a coalition led by the Muslim Brotherhood said it would consider boycotting the November 28 parliamentary elections unless the provision was revised.

The group also urged the ruling military council to pass a law that would prohibit corrupt Mubarak-era officials from running for office for 10 years. The French news agency says the military rulers have agreed to study the request.

Former President Mubarak is on trial for charges that include corruption and abuse of power. Egyptian courts have already convicted several members of his government on abuse-of-power charges.