The former head of the U.N.'s nuclear agency critiqued Egypt's lack of democracy after some political quarters urged him to come home and run for president. In an open letter published in newspapers over the weekend, Mohamed ElBaradei said he would only consider the prospect if the country made sweeping democratic strides.
ElBaradei said he would only consider running if the constitution were amended to allow any Egyptian to run for president and remove restrictions that make it nearly impossible for independents or newcomers to enter the race. According to the AP, he added elections must be monitored by international observers, the Egyptian judiciary and an independent civil body, instead of being overseen by the Interior Ministry.
In his letter, ElBaradei wrote that without such changes, the elections would lack legitimacy and "will end as expected, like a Greek tragedy." "If I decide to run for this high post — one that I didn't seek — it would only be if the majority of Egyptians, regardless of their affiliations, consider this in the interests of the nation," ElBaradei wrote.