Egyptian Elections

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  1. Egyptians have completed their second day of voting in the historic elections with little reported incidents.  Millions voted over two days in the first round of polling, which is expected to elect the country's first civilian leader after nearly six decades of military backed dictatorship.  
  2. For Egyptians the two days of voting was a landmark moment but potentially just the beginning of a long process of change. Ex-google executive Wael Ghonim, who was an influential force on social media during the revolution and for a period imprisoned by the Mubarak regime, said he felt that for change to happen Egyptians had to remain optimistic.
  3. One option not available to Egyptians on the ballot paper was former head of the UN nuclear watchdog and Nobel peace laureate Mohamed ElBaradei.  He played a key part in the protest movement during the revolution and was initially was set to stand as a candidate in the election, but withdrew his bid in January.  ElBaradei said he could not take part in the election unless it was held within a real democratic system.  
  4. As the polls opened, Wall Street Journal correspondent Charles Levinson in Cairo reported that unlike previous highly scripted elections it was hard to find anyone in the country who felt they could make a confident prediction of the outcome.  Two candidates will go through from the first round of voting and Egyptians will head to the polls again in a final vote on June 16th and 17th.  
  5. Google marked the historic occasion of the Egyptian elections with a special Google Doodle on its Egyptian homepage.
  6. At polling stations around Egypt men and women queued separately to vote.  International observers and the respective candidates said that despite a few isolated alleged voting violations the vote passed off without any widespread impropriety.  
  7. Not all the polling stations were busy, Egyptian blogger Tarek Shalaby says he found that some polling stations in Cairo were very quiet.
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