From Gulf News:
The two houses of the Egyptian parliament this week approved a controversial bill, allocating 64 seats in the legislature for women, a move that has drawn mixed responses in this conservative Muslim country.
According to the bill, forwarded by President Hosni Mubarak’s National Democratic Party, 32 new constituencies, comprising two seats each, will be created nationwide to accept applications for running for the parliament from women only. The amendment will take effect starting from Egypt’s elections due next year for at least two legislative elections.
Officials in the ruling party say the quota, which increases the number of seats in the Peoples Assembly (the lower house of the parliament) to 518, is aimed at empowering women in Egypt. They add that the new law would eventually enable women to independently run against male candidates in elections and win.