ElBaradei: Military rulers took wrong direction

Former presidential hopeful Mohamed ElBaradei withdrew from the race after realizing that Egypt’s military rulers were leading the country in the wrong direction, the reformist leader said Saturday.

He described the situation in Egypt as a “fake reality” that he doesn’t want to get involved in and criticized the country’s step to elect a new president before writing the constitution.

“How would we hold parliamentary and presidential elections without setting the rules in duties?” ElBaradei said in an interview with the privately owned channel Al-Nahar. “We can’t accept a job without knowing its duties. No one can rule through a distorted constitutional declaration.”

“What if the president died, for instance? How would this be dealt with from a constitutional standpoint?” he asked.

ElBaradei announced his withdrawal from the presidential race in January, skeptical about the integrity of the elections.

“I preferred to work from outside this corrupt regime,” he said during the interview. “If circumstances changed, I would be able to nominate myself.”

Regarding the parliamentary elections dominated by Islamists, ElBaradei said, “What elections have yielded doesn’trepresent Egyptians.”

“It’s the youth who made the revolution and then everyone joined,” he said, adding that the youth got only four or five seats. He criticized the way electoral constituencies were divided and establishment of political parties.

ElBaradei urged the ruling military council to expedite the end of the interim period and presidential elections, and to amend the Constitutional Declaration.

He said some are considering forming an entity to speak for the revolution and revolutionaries.”

ElBaradei addressed the idea of a “safe exit” for Egypt’s military rulers.

“I don’t know what the safe exit is. If they want to leave power and the people thank them, they should correct all their mistakes and admit doing them, and I would be the first to welcome the safe exit. They still have the chance,” he said.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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