JERUSALEM (JTA) — Mohamed Morsi of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood was declared the winner of Egypt’s presidential race in its first democratic elections.
Egypt’s electoral commission on Sunday said Morsi was the victor and would be sworn in as president. Morsi reportedly won with 52 percent of the vote. The Muslim Brotherhood has ties to Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip.
"Israel appreciates the democratic process in Egypt and respects the results of the presidential elections," a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office in Israel said following the announcement. "Israel looks forward to continuing cooperation with the Egyptian government on the basis of the peace treaty between the two countries, which is a joint interest of both peoples and contributes to regional stability."
Morsi and Ahmed Shafik, the last prime minister of deposed President Hosni Mubarak and the candidate with the tacit backing of the military, both had claimed victory after the polls closed. The commission reportedly spent the last week reviewing complaints of election violations.
Mubarak was deposed in uprisings that began in February 2011. He is in a coma in a military prison.
Military rulers in Egypt, who have run the country since Mubarak’s departure, rewrote the country’s constitution last week, stripping much of the power of the Egyptian presidency.