CAIRO: Seven presidential hopefuls held their second meeting to coordinate efforts on Thursday, reiterating their decision not to disclose the results of their talks.
Their campaigners denied published news about the results of the first meeting held on Tuesday.
“Whatever was published about the meeting [held on Tuesday] was inaccurate,” media advisor of Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh’s presidential campaign Ali Bahnasawy said on Friday.
The seven would-be candidates held a second meeting on Thursday during which they reiterated their earlier decision not to give media stalemates.
“None of the [seven] presidential candidates spoke to any media outlets. And we are calling on the media to stop publishing [incorrect] news at such a critical time in Egypt,” Bahnasawy told Daily News Egypt.
The meeting tackled the recent amendment of the emergency law, the parliamentary elections law and the crackdown on TV channels. However, no results or agreements were officially announced following the meetings.
“They chose not to speak to the press until they reach [consensus] over their specific demands,” Bahnasawy said.
Following the first meeting, some newspapers and news portals published reports about the seven men holding a secret meeting at the headquarters of Mohamed ElBaradei’s presidential campaign.
The published reports said quoting unnamed sources as saying that the presidential hopefuls discussed several issues that included the ruling army council handing over authority in Egypt to civilians.
Reuters on Thursday carried statements by former Arab League chief and presidential hopeful Amr Moussa saying the candidates agreed on calling on the military to set an early date for the presidential elections.
"All of us are calling for an early date and fixed date for presidential elections and not to stay in a general frame without knowing [a date]," Moussa told Reuters.
"We talked about February-March," he said, adding that they would make their call to the military council once they had agreed demands on other issues including the army’s decision to extend emergency law and plans for a new electoral law.
The meeting was attended by Aboul Fotouh, ElBaradei, Moussa, Hamdeen Sabahi, Hazem Salah Abou Ismail, Mohamed Selim El-Awwa and Hisham El-Bastaweesy who joined them over the phone from outside Egypt.
“They agreed to continue their discussions until they define issues on which they can reach consensus with all political forces and concerned parties for the sake of the public, national interest,” a joint statement released by the seven presidential hopefuls read.