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Trump congratulates Egypt's Sisi after dubious vote

Trump congratulates Egypt's Sisi after dubious vote”

In July 2013, Egyptian army chief General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi led a coalition to remove President Mohammed Morsi from power and suspended the Egyptian constitution.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi originally ordered the creation of the Supreme Council for Combating Terrorism and Extremism after meeting with the National Defence Council following terrorist attacks a year ago. The first presidential term of 63-year-old Field Marshal will officially end on June 7.

The commission said that Mr Sisi won a total...

One day later, another serious contender, rights lawyer Khaled Ali withdrew, saying he and his supporters were being intimidated. The main challenger was arrested and his campaign manager beaten up, while other presidential hopefuls pulled out, citing intimidation.

"The election was an epic of love dedicated to Egypt", said head of the election commission, Lasheen Ibrahim.

A total of 21,835,387 voted for Sisi at home and overseas, while Sisi's only rival Moussa Mostafa Moussa garnered 656,534 votes, or 2.92 percent.

State media had portrayed failure to vote as a betrayal of Egypt.

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The almost three percent of the vote not won by the incumbent president went to the unknown politician Moussa Mustafa Moussa, an ardent supporter of el-Sissi's who entered the race at the last minute and did not campaign.

"The voice of the masses of Egyptians will remain a witness - no doubt - that the will of our nation is prevailing with a force that does not know weakness", Sisi had said". Some voters said they were offered incentives to cast their ballots including money and food, local and global media reported, but did not say who had made the offers. Mr Sisi swept to victory in an election a year later with 97 percent of the vote.

The United States wants to build on its "strategic partnership" with Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the State Department said on Monday, despite its concerns over political freedom in his country.

Trump's decision to congratulate the fellow president could face criticism.

Critics say Al-Sisi's popularity has been hurt by austerity reforms and a muzzling of opponents, activists and independent media since his 2014 election.

"It hopes that his reelection will allow him to satisfy the legitimate aspirations of the Egyptian people for security, prosperity and the full expression of freedoms in a constitutional framework", she said without elaborating.



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