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Egyptian Pres. to stand for second term

Egyptian Pres. to stand for second term

Former Egyptian armed forces chief of staff General Sami Anan said on Saturday he meant to run in the country's presidential election in March.

"I call on civilian and military institutions to maintain neutrality towards everyone who had announced their intention to run and not take unconstitutional sides of a president who will leave his post in a few months", Enan said.

The Egyptian president asserted that he would not allow any corrupt person to approach the ruling seat in Egypt.

Other candidates declared their will to run in the 2018 elections, including human rights lawyer Khaled Ali, MP and Zamalek Sporting Club chairman Mortada Mansour.

However, there is a chance Ali would be disqualified from the race due to his suspended three-month jail term that he received back in September for allegedly making an obscene hand gesture in front of a court. Those who aspire to be candidates should receive support from a minimum of 20 members of Parliament or 25,000 citizens from at least 15 governments with at least 1,000 from each province.

"A statement to the great people of Egypt, Sami Anan will run for president in the 2018 elections", said the secretary-general of the party, founded by Anan, in a statement on his Facebook page.

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According to the Egyptian constitution, the president can only serve a maximum of two four-year terms.

Sisi's challengers have described a sweeping effort to kill off their campaigns before they have even begun, with media attacks on candidates, intimidation of supporters, and a nomination process stacked in favor of the former general.

Late on Friday (19 January), just as largely expected, al-Sisi, 63, announced he would contest in the March presidential race.

"I pledge that the upcoming presidential election will be free and transparent. and be characterized by equal opportunities between candidates", Sisi said.

Sisi was defense minister when he led a de facto military coup in 2013 to topple the administration of Mohamed Morsi, which came to power after the "Arab Spring" uprisings.

Sisi has promised not to run for a third term, but is likely to cruise to a second term given the clampdown on opponents.