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Video: Egypt votes nearly a year after revolution

  1. Transcript of: Egypt votes nearly a year after revolution

    BRIAN WILLIAMS, anchor: And now we turn to Egypt , where this is a history-making day, the first election day since Mubarak fell. And tonight our chief foreign correspondent, Richard Engel , is in Cairo , where there may be reason for the US to be worried about the outcome of this vote.

    RICHARD ENGEL reporting: With every vote cast, every finger dipped in ink, Egypt today moved closer to democracy.

    Unidentified Woman #1: For the first time we feel that we can really make a difference.

    ENGEL: Four thousand candidates are running for parliament from more than 40 political parties. Voting stations so crowded, soldiers had to keep order. But voting was largely peaceful. It didn't seem possible even a week ago when protesters clashed with security forces. Tonight those protesters stayed in Tahrir Square , boycotting the vote, saying it's not democratic enough, that the military still has too much power.

    Unidentified Man #1: I don't trust in this elections.

    ENGEL: But the boycott could benefit their main opponent, Egypt 's Muslim Brotherhood , banned under Mubarak . At one of Cairo 's busiest polling centers, most people told us they support the brotherhood.

    Unidentified Man #2: The most organized party in Egypt and make good deeds for the people here.

    ENGEL: Do you think Americans should be worried about the Muslim Brotherhood ?

    Unidentified Woman #2: No, no. Why?

    ENGEL: Because people in the US think maybe they're extremists, they want to change Egypt into a Islamic state .

    Woman #2: They want -- they must have a chance. They must have a chance.

    ENGEL: The brotherhood is powerful, rich, often anti-American and definitely anti- Israel . The group is taking advantage of this opportunity, handing out leaflets as voters go to the polls and recording exit polls on laptops, the only party we saw doing that. This democratic transition may be flawed, but the Muslim Brotherhood isn't letting that get in its way. Elections will be taking place here, Brian , over the next several months, but the potential political fallout could be severe. Egypt has long been a close and reliable US partner in the Middle East . That could be changing.

    WILLIAMS: Richard Engel watching it all tonight in Cairo . Richard , thanks

Photos: Elections in Egypt

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  1. Election officials count ballots for the parliamentary elections in Cairo, Egypt, on Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2011. Egypt is holding its first parliamentary elections since longtime authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak was ousted in a popular uprising in February. The vote is a milestone many Egyptians hope will usher in a democratic age after decades of dictatorship. (Amr Nabil / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. An election official classifies votes for the parliamentary elections at a counting center in Cairo on Nov. 30. The head of the election commission proclaimed that the turnout so far is 'massive and unexpected'. (Amr Nabil / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. A man smokes a waterpipe while reading news on his tablet as a TV channel broadcasts live election coverage at a cafe in the Zeitun neighborhood of Cairo on Nov. 30. (Odd Andersen / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Electoral workers count ballots after voting closed at a counting center in Cairo on Nov. 29. (Ahmed Jadallah / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. A policeman stands guard as election officials collect ballot boxes from a polling station near Tahrir Square at the end of the voting day in Cairo on Nov. 29. (Odd Andersen / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Two women are seen in voting booths on the second day of parliamentary elections in Cairo on Nov. 29. (Ahmed Ali / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Coptic Christian women help voters find their registration numbers outside a polling station in the Manshiet Nasser district of Cairo on Nov. 29. (Mahmud Hams / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. A soldier takes a picture at a polling station in the Cairo neighborhood of Shubra on Nov. 29. (Mohammed Hossam / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. A woman casts her vote at a polling station during the second day of parliamentary elections in Alexandria on Nov. 29. (Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. A boy uses a megaphone to support a candidate outside a polling station in Cairo on Nov. 29. There were numerous reports of election violations by party activists, most over campaigning close to polling sites while voting was under way. (Amr Nabil / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. A solider gestures as a lady helps an elderly woman at the entrance to a polling station in Alexandria on Nov. 29. Long lines formed at polling stations for a second day of voting Tuesday and the head of the election commission, Abdel-Mooaez Ibrahim, proclaimed turnout so far had been "massive and unexpected." (Tarek Fawzy / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Election officials wait for voters inside a polling station in Old Cairo on the second day of voting on Nov. 29. 45 million Egyptians are eligible to vote in the first round of six. The complicated process will take four months to conclude. Presidential elections are expected to be held in 2012. (Peter MacDiarmid / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Prime Minister Kamal el-Ganzouri waves to voters on the first day of parliamentary elections in Cairo on Nov. 28. (AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. A woman waits in front of election posters after voting in Cairo on Nov. 28. (Bela Szandelszky / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. People line up outside a polling station in Cairo on Nov. 28. (Goran Tomasevic / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. An Egyptian woman reads a ballot before casting her vote during parliamentary elections in Cairo on Nov. 28. (Ahmed Jadallah / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. A voter shows her inked finger after voting at a girls' school on Nov. 28 in Cairo. (Peter MacDiarmid / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. People wait outside a polling station to vote in parliamentary elections in Cairo on Nov. 28. (Goran Tomasevic / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Soldiers maintain order as people wait outside a polling station in Alexandria on Nov. 28. (Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Tahrir Square is occupied by only a few hundred protesters on election day on Nov. 28 in Cairo. (Peter MacDiarmid / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. A voter reads a ballot at a polling station in Cairo on Nov. 28. (Peter MacDiarmid / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Egyptian women wait behind the door of a polling station in Cairo on Nov. 28. (Bela Szandelszky / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
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  1. Image: Election officials count ballots for the parliamentary elections in Cairo, Egypt.
    Amr Nabil / AP
    Above: Slideshow (22) Elections in Egypt
  2. Image: BESTPIX  Cairo Tense As Preparations Continue For Elections
    Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images
    Slideshow (44) Protests continue in Egypt

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