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Egypt elections: Muslim Brotherhood in a fight for survival

The Muslim Brotherhood has a lot to lose if the group's candidate fails to win Egypt's presidential elections runoff. Turnout appears light on the second day of voting.

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The Muslim Brotherhood movement in Egypt is fighting for political survival against the country's military rulers, resisting the military's attempts to dissolve the parliament and urging voters to back the Brotherhood's man for president on this second day of voting.

Relatively few Egyptians appear to be turning out to cast ballots as the Brotherhood’s presidential candidate, Mohamed Morsi, faces former military man Ahmed Shafiq in a race that has high stakes for the Brotherhood. If Mr. Shafiq wins, many in the once-banned organization fear a return to the days of ousted President Hosni Mubarak, when Brotherhood members were often arrested in their homes and detained for years.

The Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) said in a statement Saturday evening that the military has no right to order the dissolution of parliament, and such a decision can only come through a national referendum. The statement is a challenge to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), the military generals ruling Egypt, who said a Thursday court ruling means the parliament is null. The generals have sent soldiers to the assembly building who are refusing to allow members of parliament to enter.

“The constant threat to dissolve a parliament elected by the will of 30 million Egyptians confirms the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces’ desire for a total power grab against the popular will,” said the FJP in a statement that called the ruling a “blatant attack on the great Egyptian revolution.”

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