Presidential candidate Ahmed Shafiq, a former prime minister under Hosni Mubarak's regime, has attacked his Islamist rival, Mohammed Morsi, by saying Morsi would let the Muslim Brotherhood control Egypt and take it to the dark ages.
"I represent a civil state, the Brotherhood represents a sectarian Brotherhood state. I represent moving forward, they represent going backwards," Shafiq said.
Shafiq's statement appeared mainly to play on the fears of liberals, Christians and women. "Women of Egypt, I will not permit that the powers of extremism take you back to the dark ages," he said.
Shafiq is facing Mohammed Morsi in the second round of voting June 16-17. The former prime minister is hated by pro-democracy activists who started the revolt against Hosni Mubarak last year, accusing him of being the "man of the military council," who runs the country since the fall of Mubarak and see him as a symbol of the old regime.
Meanwhile, Thousands of angry demonstrators in Fayoum city have trashed and burned the campaign office of Ahmad Shafiq, said security officials. The campaign headquarters of Mr. Shafiq in Cairo had already been attacked last Monday.
According to Alarabiya news, Footage posted on Al-Ahram website showed young men destroying and burning Shafiq’s pictures and banners and others chanting: “Fayoum says Ahmed Shafiq is feloul (an Arabic word used to refer to remnant of an ousted political regime).”
In Cairo, Nile News television channel reported that Egyptians have once again held a demonstration in Tahrir Square to protest against the ruling junta and the controversial verdict in the case of former president Hosni Mubarak’s.
According to Reuters news, mass rallies also took place in two other Egyptian cities – Alexandria and Suez. Protesters are angry about the court’s “mild” sentence. They are also angry about the fact that the court exonerated four former high-ranking officials of the Egypt's Interior Ministry.