Mubarak sets Egypt's election date
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Wednesday has set in a decree November 28 as the date for the country's much-anticipated parliamentary elections, Press TV reported.
The Egyptian government has closed some private television channels and detained several opposition figures.
Mubarak's ruling National Democratic Party is set to again grasp control of the lower house by winning most seats.
The opposition Muslim Brotherhood, which won nearly a fifth of the People's Assembly seats in the 2005 general elections, says its members will get about 30 percent of the seats.
Prominent Egyptian opposition leader and former director general of UN's regulatory International Atomic Energy Agency Mohamed ElBaradei has called for boycott of the elections.
The Muslim Brotherhood, however, has defended its decision to field candidates.
"We participate for Egypt's sake," Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Essam el-Erian said last week.
"Participation is the best way to expose the corruption of the regime," he added.
On Sunday, Egyptian security forces detained 154 members of the opposition group, Muslim Brotherhood said.
Egyptian officials, however, say they detained the opposition members over alleged plans to cause disturbances.
The group's lawyer Abdul Monem Abdul Maqsoud told reporters in Cairo on Sunday that 70 detainees remain in custody but the others were released after questioning, DPA reported.
Abdul Maqsoud added that the arrests were intended to spread fear among opposition supporters in an effort to keep people from joining the election campaign.