Violence hits Egyptian constitution vote

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Violence hits Egyptian constitution vote

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Amidst ongoing violence in Egypt the first stage of a referendum on a new constitution has taken place.

Those opposed to the wording think it gives too much power to the new President Mohamed Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood. Secular and Christian opponents say it is too Islamist.

At least eight people were killed last week in clashes outside the presidential palace in Cairo.

The vote is in two stages because there were not enough officials willing to monitor the necessary amount of polling stations needed, and some judges are boycotting the referendum. Nevertheless early indications are that turnout has been high.

The second poll will take place on December 22.

Away from the polling stations, an attack on an opposition newspaper on Saturday is being blamed on Islamists. The premises of the paper, which is published by the Waft party, were targetted with petrol bombs.

It is the latest in a series of violent incidents in what so far is proving to be a divisive referendum designed to pave the way for national elections next year.