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Egypt

Election officials declare Egyptian constitution passed

Official results in Egypt's constitutional referendum have been released by the country's supreme election committee. The committee said 63.8 percent of voters had approved the measure.

Egyptian election workers count ballots at the end of the second round of a referendum on a disputed constitution drafted by Islamist supporters of president Mohammed Morsi at a polling station in Giza, Egypt, Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012. Egypt's Islamist-backed constitution headed toward likely approval in a final round of voting on Saturday, but the deep divisions it has opened up threaten to fuel continued turmoil. (Foto:Nasser Nasser/AP/dapd)

Ägypten Referendum Auszählung

The approval numbers given on Tuesday by the election committee matched those projected by the Muslim Brotherhood party, which supports President Mohammed Morsi and dominated the legislative assembly that drafted the constitution.

The committee said voter turnout was just 32.9 percent.

"There is no loser in this referendum result. This constitution will be for all of us," Prime Minister Hisham Qandil said in a statement, calling on "all political forces to cooperate with the government" to restore the economy.

Opposition vows to keep fighting

The opposition has vowed to keep up the fight against the draft constitution, which they believe would weaken the state of human rights in the country.

The National Salvation Front, an opposition coalition group, complained of voting "fraud and violations" and said on Monday it would launch a legal challenge.

Samir Abul Maati, the president of the election committee, denied during Tuesday's press conference allegations that judicial supervision was lacking in the election.

"We did not find any polling stations without judges as complaints said," Abdul Maati said.

International reaction

Leaders around the world reacted to the result, with the US calling on Morsi to "bridge divisions."

"President Morsi ... has a special responsibility to move forward in a way that recognizes the urgent need to bridge divisions, build trust, and broaden support for the political process," said State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell in a statement.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton stressed the need for dialogue between supporters of the constitution and the opposition.

"It is of the utmost importance that the confidence and trust of all Egyptians in the process is restored," she said.

mz,dr/jr (Reuters, AFP, dpa)