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Egypt parliament opens for the first time following the fall of Mubarak

Mahmud Hams / AFP - Getty Images

Crowds gather as secretary general of Egypt's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) Saad al-Katatni, center, arrives to attend the newly elected parliament's first session in Cairo on Jan. 23, 2012. Egypt's lower house of parliament held its first session since a popular uprising ousted veteran president Hosni Mubarak, with Islamists dominating the assembly for the first time.

Asmaa Waguih / Reuters

Human right activist and member of the parliament, Amr Hamzawy, speaks to other parliament members before the start of the first Egyptian parliament session after the revolution that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo Jan. 23, 2012. Egypt's parliament began its first session on Monday since an election put Islamists in charge of the assembly following the overthrow of Mubarak in February.

Asmaa Waguih / Reuters

A general view for the first Egyptian parliament session after the revolution that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo, Jan. 23, 2012.

Suhaib Salem / Reuters

Muslim Brotherhood supporters celebrate outside Egypt's parliament in Cairo Jan. 23, 2012. Egypt's parliament began its first session on Monday since an election put Islamists in charge of the assembly following the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak in February.

 Reuters reports:

Egypt's parliament opened on Monday for the first time since a historic free election put Islamists in the driving seat after years of repression under deposed President Hosni Mubarak.

The Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) was the biggest winner in the first free vote in decades. It has vowed to guide Egypt in the transition to civilian rule after generals took charge following the popular uprising that began on January 25 and ended with Mubarak's ouster on February 11.

"I invite the distinguished assembly to stand and read the fatiha (Muslim prayer) in memory of the martyrs of the January 25 revolution ... because the blood of the martyrs is what brought this day," said Mahmoud al-Saqa, 81, a member of the liberal Wafd party, who as oldest member of the house acted as speaker. Full story.

The parliament's first task is to appoint a speaker. That is likely to be the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohamed Saad el-Katatni, pictured at top being mobbed by crowds.