Mubarak prepares to run for yet another term

Sunday, February 1, 2004

CAIRO Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak appears ready to run for another term, despite pledges to the contrary.

Egyptian sources said Mubarak's National Democratic Party has been quietly laying the groundwork for another presidential campaign in late 2005. The sources said the measures have been minor but could be intensified over the next year.

The NDP has launched a campaign to win signatures from parliament to keep Mubarak in power for another six-year term. The campaign, reported in the official Al Musawar weekly, has sought to win the support of two-thirds of Egypt's 454-member parliament in accordance with the nation's constitution.

Mubarak has been president since 1981 in wake of the assassination of President Anwar Sadat. He has consistently denied assertions that he has been grooming his son, Jamal, for the presidency, Middle East Newsline reported.

Earlier, Mubarak political adviser Osama El Baz said Mubarak was not planning to run for another term. For his part, Mubarak has refused to appoint a vice president, even amid a lawsuit against the president.

Egypt's constitution does not limit the number of presidential terms or the age of a candidate. Mubarak will be 76 in May 2004.

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