Latest developments of Egypt's constitutional referendum

Saturday, December 15, 2012 2:15 PM 
A girl stands with her mother who is waiting outside a polling center to vote in referendum on the new constitution of Egypt in Cairo December 15, 2012. REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah

Egyptians began casting their votes in the referendum on the country's new constitution on Saturday.

Below are the latest developments:

Cairo:
. Long queues of women at a Shubra polling station where a veiled woman verbally attacked different media outlets and members of Egypt's highest court, an eyewitness said.
. Some polling stations witnessed high turnout, others did not.
. Some Salafis (ultraconservatives) were seen outside one polling station trying to convince voters to vote "yes".
. Some voters complained that ballots were not stamped while a judge complained that there were not enough staff members to assist voters.
. United States envoy in Egypt Anne Patterson visited some polling stations.
. President Mohamed Mursi voted at a Heliopolis polling station on Saturday morning.
. Prime Minister Hisham Kandil visited some polling stations to make sure the referendum was carrying on smoothly.
. Coptic Pope Tawadros voted on Saturday.
. Police and army forces are present to secure polling stations.
. A calm atmosphere generally prevailed at polling stations.

Alexandria:
. More than one polling station witnessed violations – including vehicles distributing flyers calling on voters to vote "yes" for stability.
. Security director of Alexandria insisted that all polling stations were in order and none were closed.

Sharqiya:
Shura Council chairman Ahmed Fahmy voted on Saturday morning – where he was met by chants from opponents of the draft constitution.
. Most polling stations opened on time except for some due to the tardiness of the judges supervising the vote.
. The turnout is only average due to the low temperature.
. Some polling stations have not opened until now.

Gharbiya:
. At one polling station, names of diseased citizens were found in registration books.
. At one polling station, voters reported unstamped ballots.
. The "Laptop Phenomena" returns with citizens rallying by polling stations to persuade voters of their views.
. High turnout at a number of polling stations as others have not opened yet.

Assiut:
. Polling stations at one village opened late as two families exchanged fire due to an unresolved conflict – polls only reopened when security forces were able to contain the tension. One person was injured in the confrontations.  
. Some polling stations opened late as judges counted the ballots, others because judges arrived late.
. Assiut's governor voted on Saturday, insisting to stand in the queue for his turn.
. Some polling stations witnessed high turnout.

Aswan:
. Confrontations broke out between Islamists and their opponents after Islamists objected to journalists photographing veiled women attempting to manipulate the vote of some people.
. Turnout has increased at some polling stations as it remained low in others.
.  Some polling stations opened late.
. Some veiled women were seen persuading voters to vote "yes" at one polling station.
. Opponents of the constitution were seen distributing flyers urging voters to turn down the charter at some polling stations.

North Sinai:
. Low turnout in Arish at some polling stations.
. Judges – who are overseeing polls – arrived late at a number of polling stations.

Sohag:
. High turnout since polls opened.
. Over 100 polling stations opened late due to the tardiness of judges who are supposed to monitor the polls.
. One polling station could not carry on as ballots were missing.

South Sinai:
. Very low turnout at most polling stations where heavy security – police and army – was deployed.
. Some polling stations opened late.

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