Opposition groups divided on ElBaradei

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By Heba Fahmy

CAIRO: Mohamed ElBaradei announced to the protestors in Tahrir square on Sunday night that opposition groups had delegated him to form a temporary national unity government and called on President Hosni Mubarak to step down.

However the coalition of opposition powers denied ElBaradei’s claim.

“We (the coalition of opposition groups) didn’t delegate anyone to represent us,” Vice President of Al Wafd Party, Fouad El Badrawy, told Daily News Egypt. “ElBaradei’s statement is completely untrue.”

“No one can represent the Egyptian people,” El Badrawy said. “[The coalition of opposition groups] represents a fraction of the Egyptian people.”

However, head of the Democratic Front Party Osama Ghazali Harb presented a statement to delegate ElBardei to represent the coalition of opposition parties and the coalition refused.

The coalition of opposition powers includes Al Wafd, Al Tagammu, the Nasserist and the Democratic Front Parties.

“This [coalition of opposition parties] have no presence in the streets or among the people,” said prominent member of the Muslim Brotherhood and former MP, Mohamed Al Beltagi

El Beltagi said that the Brotherhood and a number of other opposition powers agreed on Sunday to delegate ElBaradei and nine other prominent figures of different opposition to form a national committee.

This committee would be responsible for managing the current crisis in Egypt and negotiating the opposition’s demands with the government or the army if such a negotiation takes place.

“We want a transitional government representing the people, we want to dissolve the parliament and amend the constitution,” El Beltagi told Daily News Egypt.

ElBeltagi said that these figures include him, head of Al Ghad Party, Ayman Nour, general coordinator of the National Association for Change (NAC) Abdel Gelil Mostafa and Hamadeen Sabbahi, founder of the Karama Party.

Prominent MB member in Alexandria and former MP Sobhi Saleh told Daily News Egypt, “We hope that Egypt’s opposition powers can unite in these difficult times,”

Hamdy Qandil, former spokesperson and current member of NAC, confirmed to Daily News Egypt that ElBardei was among nine others chosen to represent different opposition groups to form a national committee to manage the current crisis in Egypt.

State TV announced on Monday that President Hosni Mubarak called on the new assigned Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq to initiate a dialogue with opposition groups regarding their demands.



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