Egypt military - Nour may run for president

2012-03-28 22:11

Cairo - Egypt's military ruler Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi on Wednesday granted opposition figure Ayman Nour full political rights, allowing him to run in a May presidential election, state media reported.

Nur, who challenged ousted president Hosni Mubarak in a 2005 election, last year lost an appeal to erase a five-year jail sentence passed on forgery charges. The sentence made him ineligible to run for office.

Tantawi decreed that Nour "could engage in all his political rights," the official Mena news agency reported.

Nour shot to fame when he ran in Egypt's first multi-candidate presidential election, losing overwhelmingly to Mubarak who had ruled Egypt since 1981 and was finally ousted by a popular uprising last year.

Months after the election in which he clinched 7.6% of the vote, he was sentenced to five years in jail on what many saw as politically-motivated charges.

The sentencing was denounced by the United States, which called for Nour's release. He was finally freed in 2009 on health grounds.

To run for Egypt's top job, Nour who founded the Al-Ghad party, must either be nominated by a party or secure the endorsement of 30 MPs or 30 000 eligible voters from 15 provinces.

The presidential election is scheduled for May 23 - 24.

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