Egyptians voting in a referendum on draft constitution today
Egyptians are voting in a referendum on a draft constitution that has divided the country and sparked deadly unrest. Voters were allowed to cast “yes” or “no” ballots from 8 a.m. 7 p.m. local time, but the deadline could be extended depending on turnout.
Television images showed some queues in Cairo and else where polling stations opened. President Mohammed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood have campaigned heavily in favour of the constitution.
Opponents say it is poorly drafted and too Islamist. This round of voting takes place in Cairo, Alexandria and eight other provinces, a week before the rest of the country. Some 250,000 security personnel have been deployed.
More than 51 million people are registered to vote. Polling had to be spread out because few judges were willing to supervise the referendum. Human Rights groups have expressed fears that results from the first round could sway the opinion of those voting in the second.