47. Copts in the recent parliamentary elections

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47. Copts in the recent parliamentary elections


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p. 5
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Majid ‘Atiyah
Shayma’ al-Shami
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Mājid ‘Atīya clarifies some points concerning the participation of Copts in the recent parliamentary elections.

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Mājid ‘Atīya dismisses accusations that Copts were extremely passive during the last parliamentary election. Some people argue that Copts should step into the actual political arena and take an active part in decision-making process.

‘Atīya writes a few short notes on participation of Copts in the recent elections:

- Coptic candidates did not draw support from any organization or society.

- Some Coptic candidates have run against each other in some constituencies, such as Shubrā.

- Some parties nominated a few Copts, but did not support them.

- The National Democratic Party (NDP) nominated two Coptic candidates, one of whom failed [Reviewer: no name given. Māhir Khalla, the above-referred to Coptic candidate withdrew from the parliamentary elections in order to prevent more violence that erupted following an "offensive” church play on Islam]. The other, Minister of Finance, Dr. Yousuf Butrus Ghālī, was elected.

- The Wafd Party nominated eight Copts, none of whom managed to win.

- Coptic female candidates have played a major role on the political scene, and Dr. Muna Makram ‘Ubayd, candidate for the Shubrā constituency, is a case in point [Editor: she was running as independent and lost].

Three Coptic female candidates have managed to get to the second round of the elections. These three are Muna Munīr Ya‘qoub Hannā in Alexandria, Muna Shawqī Rādī Ghālī in Suez and Huda Na‘īm Maqqār in Bandar, Qinā. ‘Atīya admits that Coptic female candidates have slackened off in the third round, ascribing that to the discouraging results of the first two rounds of the election.