Egypt presidential hopeful says bureaucrats blocking his bid

Supporters of a rights lawyer who hopes to run in Egypt's presidential election in May say bureaucrats loyal to the government are obstructing their efforts to get him on the ballot.

The complaints aired Wednesday suggest Khaled Ali is struggling to secure the 25,000 signatures necessary to challenge President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who is widely expected to run for and win a second four-year term.

Alternatively, a presidential hopeful could secure the backing of 20 elected lawmakers. But the overwhelming majority of the chamber's 596 members already have pledged their support to el-Sissi, who has yet to formally announce his candidacy.

Ali told reporters Wednesday that "the battle for the recommendations is the real battle in this election."