Egyptian Social Democratic Party will not back candidate in election

The Egyptian Social Democratic Party will not back a candidate in the upcoming presidential election and leave the decision to its members, but told them not to vote for an Islamist or supporter of the former Mubarak regime.

The decision came after a four-hour conference held at the Journalists Syndicate Wednesday, which was headed by Mohamed Abul Ghar and attended by head of its parliamentary bloc Ziad Bahaa Eddin, Farid Zahran, Emad Gad, Bassem Kamel and other party leaders.

Altercations and accusations were exchanged between participants over a dispute as to whether the party should back Amr Moussa or Abdel Moneim Abouel Fotouh. The youth and students committee of the party threatened to withdraw if the party backed either of them.   

The Salafi-led Nour Party, meanwhile, said it utilized psychiatrists to help the party select a candidate. Adel Nasr, a member of Nour’s supreme board, said the psychiatrists analyzed the character and psychological condition of each candidate.

The Ghad al-Thawra Party said it would make a final decision on Tuesday, as it is currently deciding between Amr Moussa, Hamdeen Sabbahi and Khaled Ali. It had already eliminated the 10 other candidates in an earlier round of voting.

The party also witnessed sharp disagreements between its members over the possibility of supporting Moussa or Ahmed Shafiq. Ayman Nour, the party head, called on participants to calm down by saying, “We are not in a football match.”

Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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