Egyptians are voting in the second round of the country’s parliamentary election.President Hosni Mubarak’s National Democratic party won most seats in the first round. But the banned Islamist group the Muslim Brotherhood performed much better than expected. Outlawed since 1954, the Brotherhood fields its candidates as independents. It more than doubled its strength in parliament. The government has said the elections will be free and fair but there have already been widespread complaints of irregularities during the first round. Muslim Brotherhood activists have been holding demonstrations in Cairo to denounce the elections. Around 200 followers were arrested overnight ahead of the opening of the ballot. The third and final count takes place early next month. But while change is underway in Egypt, there is no doubt the power will remain for now, in the hands of Mubarak and his party.
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