The results of the first round indicate that a number of ministers have failed to be elected and have to run for a second round. One is the minister of supplies, one of the most popular members of the Egyptian government. Moreover, the brother of the prime minister was defeated in the first round.
The propounder vote for the National Democratic Party in the first round is a vote of confidence in the leadership of President Mubarak. For the last three years, Egyptians have suffered as a result of actions perpetrated by both extremists and fanatics. This is the first opportunity they have had to say "no" to extremism and in that regard it was an important test.
Mr Fisk is casting a shadow on democracy in Egypt: 14 parties contested this election and I am sure some of these parties will make it to the second round and hope to succeed. If they were dissatisfied and believed that the results were rigged, they would have chosen not to compete. How many other countries in the world have 14 parties contesting elections, each with its own newspaper?
Is it fair to call the president of such a country a Pharaoh? I leave it to your readers.
Embassy of the Arab Republic of Egypt, London W1