CAIRO - Egypt's opposition, facing defeat over a new constitution in a referendum this weekend, urged its supporters to reject the Islamist-backed charter and pledged to fight on to amend it during elections expected next year.
Forty-eight hours before the second round of the plebiscite, the main opposition coalition of liberals, leftist, Christians and secular Muslims called for a "no" vote against a document it views as leaning too far towards Islamism.
The first day of voting last weekend resulted in a 57 percent majority in favor of the constitution, promoted by Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi as a vital step in Egypt's transition to democracy almost two years after the fall of Hosni Mubarak.
The second stage on Saturday is expected to produce another "yes" vote as it covers areas of the country that are seen as more conservative and likely to back Morsi.
The National Salvation Front, the main opposition coalition, said a "no" vote meant taking a stand against attempts by the Muslim Brotherhood, Morsi's political backers, to dominate Egypt.
"For the sake of the future, the masses of our people should strongly and firmly say 'no' to injustice and 'no' to the Brotherhood's dominance," the Front said in a statement.
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