A new decree from the Egyptian military junta announced that the parliamentary run-off elections are being moved up three weeks so that parliament can hold its first official sitting on February 28 instead of in late March.
The third and final round of the lower house vote will take place next week, with the upper house votes held after. The move comes amid growing popular demand to hand over rule to civilian control.
But whether it will actually facilitate such a move is unclear, as the junta has already condemned the elections as not being “representative” of the will of the voters, even though they voted in them. Instead, they plan to appoint a council that will retain what few powers they were supposed to grant parliament.
The first two rounds of voting saw overwhelming support for the nation’s Islamist parties, with the Muslim Brotherhood on the cusp of securing enough seats to form a majority government without any partners. The al-Nour party, an Islamist Shura party, is running in second place and would be a likely partner in a government, if the junta allows them to actually form one.