BEIRUT

Middle East

Egypt hardline Islamist party heals rift, for now

In this Monday, Feb. 27, 2012 file photo, Egyptian lawmaker Anwar al-Balkimy, center, gestures during a session of parliament in Cairo, Egypt. AP

CAIRO: Spokesmen for a party representing Egypt's ultraconservative Islamists say a leadership dispute that threatened to break up the group, the country's second-largest political bloc, has been resolved.

The Al-Nour Party rocketed out of nowhere after Egypt's 2011 uprising to take 25 percent of the seats in last year's parliamentary elections, just behind the Muslim Brotherhood. But a schism erupted this month when political leaders tried to shake off the control of clerics.

Spokesman Yousry Hammad of the original leadership and Nader Bakkar of the clerical camp said Saturday the current head of the party, Emad Abdel-Ghafour, will stay in his position.

Details of the agreement were not immediately available. It comes a day before a state committee was to interfere to settle the dispute.

 

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