Cairo: Islamic parties appeared to have swept the first round of elections for an Egyptian parliament that is likely to erase the secular rule of Hosni Mubarak with a politics more intensely driven by religion.
The Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party was projected to have won at least 40% of the vote, according to unofficial results leaked by election judges. That number indicates that the group, whose religious rigor and social programs bolstered it for decades against a repressive police state, is emerging as Egypt’s most potent political force.
Official results were scheduled to be released Thursday. The election commission pushed the announcement to Friday, saying a larger-than-expected turnout slowed the counting of ballots.