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EGYPT – State protests accusations of human rights abuses



The Egyptian government is struggling to digest accusations of human rights violations brought by 31 countries to the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council. Thus, the Egyptian Parliament and Senate completely rejected these accusations this Saturday, March 13, 2021. For them, Egypt has only applied the anti-terrorism laws, which justifies the deprivation of the freedoms of certain citizens. In any case, such accusations brought by these 31 countries including France and the United States constitute a first international condemnation since 2014.

The Egyptian Senate is convinced that the rights of citizens are respected. The arrests noted all over the country follow a violation of the laws in force throughout the country. “No lawyer, journalist (…) or human rights activist is detained unless he has committed a crime justifying the actions taken against him, through a trial or a fair investigation conducted by (a power) fully judicial independent from the executive, ”the Egyptian Senate said in a statement.

The UN accuses Egypt of using anti-terrorism laws to establish a dictatorial state that violates freedoms of expression and opinion. Laws used as a pretext to muzzle opponents of the regime, rights defenders and journalists.

Since 2013, the year of the dismissal by the army of President Mohamed Morsi belonging to the Islamic movement, and the coming to power in 2014 of Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, some Egyptian citizens have been regularly persecuted and killed. ‘others are put in jail for expressing their opinion. According to NGOs, Egypt has more than 60,000 prisoners of conscience. The head of state, for his part, rejects any form of opposition, Islamist or liberal. “The Egyptian state has only used anti-terrorism laws against those who have committed terrorist crimes, as universally recognized,” the Senate added. “

The Egyptian authorities are thus offended by this trial against Egypt by the UN. They find that the government has done a lot in terms of respect for freedom of opinion and the security of people and their property. “Egypt’s efforts to maintain security and stability not only within (the country) but also in the region (…) and to improve the standard of living of Egyptian citizens.” they declared.

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EGYPTE : President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi received by Emmanuel Macron



Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi arrived in Paris on Sunday, December 6, for a state visit against a backdrop of controversy. It was received this Monday by the French President Emmanuel Macron.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi arrived in Paris, the French capital, for a three-day state visit. He was received by his French counterpart. “I have had the opportunity to raise the issue of human rights, as we do among friends in confidence and in all honesty”, and “I remain the constant advocate of democratic, social openness and the recognition of a dynamic and active civil society”., said Emmanuel Macron at a joint press conference with President al-Sissi. He also welcomed Cairo’s recent release of “three NGO members”.

Indeed, this visit was hotly contested by NGOs protesting against a government that is abusing anti-terrorism legislation to eradicate legitimate human rights work and suppress peaceful dissent. “It is astonishing that France is rolling out the red carpet to a dictator when there are more than 60,000 prisoners of conscience in Egypt today,” Antoine Madelin, one of the leaders of the International Federation for Human Rights, told Agence France-Presse. “

Left-wing parties have also voiced strong criticism of the Egyptian regime. “Since Egyptian General Abdel Fattah al-Sissi took power in 2013, he has embarked on a growing crackdown on political opposition at large and civil society,” Europe-Ecology Greens said in a statement released on Friday, 4 December. He calls on Emmanuel Macron “to stop all forms of military and security cooperation, as well as the sale of arms and the maintenance and training contracts that accompany them.”

A protest march was even scheduled for Tuesday, December 08, at 6 pm, in front of the National Assembly in Paris.

To recall, on January 27, 2019, the French President regretted that the situation did not evolve «in the right direction» in Egypt. “Bloggers, journalists and activists” are imprisoned there, he said. Al-Sisi said, “Remember, we are in a troubled area.”

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EGYPT: Voting day for the legislative elections




This is the parliamentary elections in Egypt. Polling stations opened on Saturday, October 24, 2020. An election without much stake. The presidential movement is the favourites.

This is a crucial parliamentary election. Some 63 million Egyptian citizens went to the polls. Objective: to elect 568 MPs out of a total of 596, the other 28 will be appointed by the Egyptian president.  
Around 4000 independent candidates and 8 lists are in the running for seats. Since 2014, when President Abdel Fattah Al Sissi arrived after the Muslim Brotherhood was ousted from the political scene, the presidential party has dominated the country’s political bodies.

Already in August 2020, voters had already gone to the polls for the Senate elections. They had appointed 300 members of the Senate. However only 14.23% of the voters had mobilized. A low rate that may recur according to political analysts during these parliamentary elections. 

The second round of parliamentary elections is scheduled for November 7 and 8. The final results will be announced on December 14, 2020. The new MPs will take office in January 2021, the year in which the current Parliament elected in 2015 ends.

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EGYPT: Abdel Fattah Al-Sissi says Egypt manages coronavirus with “transparency”



President Abdel Fattah al-Sissi said on Sunday that Egypt was managing the new coronavirus epidemic “transparently”, denying the accusations of opacity that the authorities have recently been subjected to.

“We have been transparent since the beginning of the crisis and our data reflect reality (…). Why hide anything?” Asked Mr. Sissi in remarks broadcast on television and kept at the occasion of an official celebration of Egyptian women’s day.

While Cairo officially registered its first case of new coronavirus in mid-February, its death toll reached 294 infected people and ten deaths due to Covid-19 on Saturday evening, according to the Ministry of Health.

In recent weeks, doubts have been expressed about the reality of the figures put forward by Egypt, the most populous country in the Mediterranean with its 100 million inhabitants. Several countries have reported contamination of people who have recently stayed there.

Wednesday, at a press conference in Cairo, the regional director of the World Health Organization (WHO) for the Eastern Mediterranean, Ahmed al-Mandhari, had in particular called on the states of the Middle East to share more information with his agency, in order to contain the pandemic.

In his speech, Sissi also announced measures to help the Egyptian economy “cope with this unprecedented crisis”.

Among these, the injection of 20 billion pounds (1.2 billion euros) in support of the stock market, the fall in natural gas and electricity prices for the industrial sector and the allocation of an envelope of one billion pounds (59.4 million euros) for exporters.

Already in early March, Mr. Sissi had announced that an envelope of 100 billion pounds (or 5.9 billion euros) would be devoted to the fight against the virus.

To limit its spread, Cairo has recently decided to close schools and universities, places of worship, museums and archaeological sites, airports and the nighttime closure of cafes, restaurants and nightclubs until March 31.

Source: SlateAfrique

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