Aswat Masriya (Cairo)

15 December 2012

Egypt: Latest Developments in Constitutional Referendum

Egyptians have voted in the first round of a referendum on the country's draft constitution. The vote will be broken up over two rounds, with the ... ( Resource: Polls Close in Egypt Constitution Referendum

Egyptians began casting their votes on Saturday in the referendum on the country's new constitution.

Below are the latest developments:

Cairo:

. President Mohamed Mursi voted at a Heliopolis polling station on Saturday morning.

. The turnout is average at some polling stations while high at others.

. Police and army forces are present to secure polling stations.

. A calm atmosphere generally prevailed at polling stations.

Sharqiya:

. Most polling stations have opened.

. Turnout is only average due to the low temperature.

. Some polling stations are yet to open due to the tardiness of the judges or staff supervising them.

Gharbiya:

. Some polling stations have not yet opened as the judges supervising them are yet to arrive, despite the high turnout of voters.

. Some polling stations received long queues of Salafis (ultraconservatives) and Muslim Brotherhood members.

Assiut:

. There was a delay in the opening of some polling stations as staff members arrived late.

. Assiut Governor voted this morning, insisting to stand in the queue to wait his turn.

. Some polling stations saw long queues at the early hours of Saturday.

Aswan:

. Low turnout at polling stations during the first hours of the vote.

. Some polling stations opened late.

. Women wearing full-body veils (niqab) tried to convince other voters to vote "yes" at one polling station, an eyewitness said.

. Some opponents of the draft constitution were seen distributing flyers that describe the controversial charter as the "constitution to divide Egypt."

North Sinai:

. Low turnout in Arish - at a number of polling stations.

. The judges - who are supposed to monitor the polls - arrived late at a number of polling stations.

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