Thousands of supporters of Egypt’s former army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi have held their first campaign rally in Cairo since he announced he was running for president.
The favourite to become the country’s next political leader missed the event himself, it’s thought for security reasons following threats from the Muslim Brotherhood.
Al-Sisi has said the organisation would cease to exist should he become president.
“We were afraid of ending up with the same situation as Syria and Iraq, this is why we support General al-Sisi. It’s also because we suffer from hunger and poverty. People are tired of it,” said one male supporter at the rally.
“He stands with the June 30 revolution, he rescued the country, after it had collapsed and suffered from terrorism. He is the one who will bring us hope again,” a woman added.
The rally came as 200 suspected Islamist militants were charged with involvement with a “terrorist organisation” and launching attacks across the country.
Reporting from the gathering, Euronews correspondent Mohammed Shaikhibrahim said:
“There are many challenges facing the next president of Egypt. The most significant are, firstly, facing up to the impact of two overthrown regimes, which is a political issue that’s proving hard to settle. On the other hand, how to satisfy a population whose first concern is achieving security and economic stability.”