Egypt's Mubarak says parliamentary polls lawful

09:01, December 13, 2010      

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Activists and founders of the Kefaya (Enough) Movement, attend a protest in front of the High Court in Cairo, capital of Egypt, Dec. 12, 2010. Hundreds of Egyptian activists and members of opposition groups protested on Sunday against the result of the parliamentary vote that handed the ruling party a huge victory last month.(Xinhua/Nasser Nouri)

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said on Sunday the parliamentary elections were largely lawful despite some irregularities.

"We deplore such acts and we will work hard to change future political performance for the best," he said while delivering a speech to the parliamentary bloc of the ruling National Democratic Party.

"The party's goal has been and is still to make tangible changes in the life of the Egyptians across the nation," the president said.

The ruling NDP secured 420 out of 508 seats up for grabs in the 518-strong People's Assembly, compared to only 15 seats for the opposition amid accusations of fraud, which prompted the withdrawal of the Wafd Party and the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood.

"As an Egyptian president, I wished if the other parties did not spend their efforts on boycotting the elections," said Mubarak.

Egypt held the polls on Nov. 28 and Dec. 5.

The president insisted the elections were an important step to apply the 2007 legislative amendments that set a new quota of 64 seats for women.

Mubarak issued a decree on Saturday to appoint 10 members to the newly elected parliament, including seven Copts.

The parliamentary members will meet on Monday for the maiden session.

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