Deadlock in Egypt as protests continue

City A.M. Reporter
HUNDREDS of thousands of supporters and opponents of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi gathered in Cairo and Alexandria yesterday, two days after similar gatherings led to nationwide clashes that claimed more than 30 lives.

The huge rallies have been largely peaceful, but a military-backed plan to resolve the political crisis remained bogged down by infighting over who should be interim prime minister.

The chaos underlined the pressing need for a swift and inclusive political solution. Liberals and conservatives disputed yesterday over the choice of interim prime minister.

The transitional authorities had been set to appoint liberal politician Mohamed ElBaradei, a favourite of young anti-Mursi protest leaders, before his candidacy was scuppered on Saturday when the hardline Islamist Nour Party objected.

Yesterday the administration said the Oxford-educated lawyer, Social Democrat Ziad Bahaa el-Din, was its most likely choice, with ElBaradei as deputy president. But again Nour said no, raising fears of a prolonged deadlock.