EOHR Condemns the Beheading of French Professor

October 18th, 2020 by Editor


The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights strongly condemns the brutal murder of the French teacher Samuel Paty, 47, as a heinous terrorist attack. Samuel Paty, who taught history and geography at a school in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, was attacked on Friday evening by Abdullakh Anzorov, an 18-year old refugee from Chechnya who had been given a residency card in March 2020. Anzorov was later shot by the French police after he attacked the police with an air rifle and a knife.

Earlier this month, Paty had shown a class of teenage pupils a caricature of the prophet Mohammed from the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. This was part of a discussion on freedom of speech in his moral and civic education class, which is a required class in France. This incident sparked a furious response from a number of parents, one of whom filed a formal complaint in the police station and uploaded a photo of the professor claiming he had shown a naked picture of the prophet. Paty had reportedly insisted that he had asked Muslim students to identify themselves and leave the classroom if the content would offend them.

The anti-terror prosecutor has opened an investigation into whether Anzorov had any accomplices stating that they will investigate “assassination linked to a terrorist organization and association with terrorist criminals”.

In a statement by Egypt’s Grand Mufti Shawki Allam, Al-Zahar denounced the crime stating “This crime is rejected by Islam and this act cannot be justified, because Islam has called for the protection of human life.” Al Azahar also called for the necessity to respect religious symbols, and to refrain from stirring up hatred by insulting religions and the need to adopt global legislation that criminalizes insulting religions and their sacred symbols, and also called on everyone to display morals and religious teachings.

While the EOHR reaffirms the need to reject hate speech, the EOHR firmly denounces this incident of terrorisms and rejects violence in all its forms. This reaffirms the need to promote further cooperation between states to confront the threat of religious extremism and violent terrorism. Indeed, the threat of terrorism knows no boundaries and affects us all equally. The EOHR stresses that such acts of terrorism threaten the values of human rights, as they represent an attack on the rights and liberties enshrined in international conventions and covenants, the most important of which are the right to life, freedom, personal security and the right to movement.

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EOHR launches the “Safe Streets for Egyptian Women” campaign

October 18th, 2020 by Editor

 On October 17, 2020, the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) launched a campaign entitled “Safe Streets for Egyptian Women” aimed at highlighting the gravity of incidents of harassment and violence faced by women on public roads. This reality threatens the lives, rights, and safety of Egyptian women. As such, it is crucial that we mobilize society against harassment and violence in order to confront these practices. In addition, the EOHR hopes to shed light on the laws against harassment and rape in Egypt. Reviewing those laws will be at the top of the agenda of the next parliament.

The “Safe Street for Egyptian Women” campaign promotes the following set of goals: 1. Raising public awareness and providing technical support to make public streets safer for women and girls. 2. Improving the quality of life for families and entire communities by creating safe neighborhoods and streets. 3. Strengthening the legislative and institutional frameworks to ensure effective prevention and response to violence against women and girls in public places 4. Liaison efforts between ministries and various bodies in order to make the street safe at all levels, including infrastructure, police presence, and quick response security points. 5. Work to mobilize young volunteers of both sexes to stop sexual harassment and violence. 6. Facilitating access to legal and social services to raise awareness and change behavior at the community level.

The campaign also aims to work on multiple levels such as directing recommendations and proposals to the local administration at the lower levels and the executive governors. This process will ensure that the procedures are implemented efficiently and effectively. The EOHR demands the installation of proper lighting in public roads and taking proper steps to protect sidewalks. The EOHR will coordinate with the various ministries, including the ministry of interior, in order to provide more security and increase surveillance cameras in the street. The EOHR will also wok with the Ministry of Education in order to raise awareness on the danger of low levels of human safety in the street and work to combine those efforts and unify goals at all levels.

In the same context, the EOHR expresses its serious concern about the recurrence of incidents of harassment of women in the public sphere. Indeed, the incident of  “Maadi Girl”, as the case of “Maryam” shed light on the painful reality that women and girls suffer from in Egypt. “Maryam ” was dragged to her death in the Maadi area. Two people, one of them driving a microbus approached the victim to harass her, while the other was trying to snatch the bag from her. Maryam clung to her bag, and with movement of the vehicle at a high speed, the girl’s head hit a parked car on the side of the road, which resulted in her death.

The Public Prosecution announced in its statement regarding the incident, that the victim was seen by a witness in company with one of her friends talking near the car, when a white microbus approached, with two persons inside it, whereby the person next to the driver was grabbing the victim’s backpack, which she clung to it while the vehicle is moving, which resulted in disrupting the victim’s balance, and the vehicle fled with the bag.

The victim’s friend who was talking to her while the incident occured, reported that she moved away in fear, and she added that the victim had stayed for about half an hour at the scene of the accident until the ambulance had arrived, then she passed away.

The Public Prosecution ordered the imprisonment of those accused of murdering Maryam “Al- Maadi Girl”, for a period of four days pending investigations for murder associated with coerced theft.

This incident caused rage in the Egyptian society, which was evident through tweets on social media calling for the application of maximum penalty against those who were found guilty. Maryam’s case opened the door to broader discussions about women’s rights in the Egyptian society, and the need to preserve the safety of women in public places, which prompted the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights to launch the “Safe Street for Egyptian Women” campaign.

Dr. Hafez Abu Saada, the head of the Egyptain organization for human rights, said that the campaign “Safe Streets for Egyptian Women ” will present new solutions and visions to better address the crises that the Egyptian society and especially girls and women suffer from through applying new proposals, approaches, legal and institutional frameworks and remedies.

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The Political and Legislative Environment of the 2020 Parliamentary Elections

October 14th, 2020 by Editor

Introduction

Throughout its extended history, Egypt has provided humanity with the oldest legislative and administrative systems as the oldest civilization in the region. On the banks of the Nile arose the oldest government structure in the written history of mankind. Across the ages, the Egyptian civilizations which followed flourished on the principles of governance and administration.

As elections are considered to be the expression of the nation’s will and one of the main pillars upon which the ruling systems are based, Egypt is about to enter into a new parliamentary elections cycle (Parliament 2020), with the aim of electing 568 deputies. Half of the candidates will be elected individually (284 deputies) and the other half will be elected by the lists system. In addition, 5% (28 members) will be appointed by the President of the Republic, bringing the total up to 596 members of parliament.[1]

As the election of the legislative body and the identification of the electoral system are among the most important decisions for the stability of any democratic system, the choice of the electoral system entails consequences for all the political and economic interactions in the country. Indeed, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states, “Individuals have the right to participate in managing the affairs of their country, directly or through freely elected representatives.” As the Egyptian constitution and the Egyptian law stipulate a similar commitment, the Egyptian voter will go to the polls to vote in the House of Representatives elections from the 21st October to 23rd of October 2020.

As such, the main debate around electoral patterns often raises an important question around the ability of the adopted electoral system to accommodate the various active political forces in the political system, and about the suitability of this electoral system itself to the conditions and circumstances that the country is going through.

In light of the above, the report of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights will discuss the political and legislative environment for the House of Representatives elections 2020 under the following main themes:

The first chapter: the right to participate in managing public affairs

The second chapter: the legislative framework governing the electoral process

The third chapter: the electoral system and its theoretical dilemmas

Fourth chapter: Empowering Women and Youth

The fifth chapter: the struggle for the seat and the challenges of forming lists

The first chapter: the right to participate in managing public affairs

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states in its Article 21 that every person has the right to participate in the conduct of the public affairs of his country, either directly or through freely chosen representatives. As such, the will of the people is the source of autthority of the government, which should be garnered through fair elections that are held periodically with universal and equal suffrage among the electorate through secret balloting or an equivalent procedure that ensures freedom of voting.

The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights also indicated in Article 3, “The States Parties to the present Covenant undertake to ensure the equal right of men and women to the enjoyment of all civil and political rights set forth in the present Covenant.”

Likewise, in Article (25), the Covenant sipulates that “Every citizen shall have the right and the opportunity, without any of the distinctions mentioned in article 2 and without unreasonable restrictions:

(a) To take part in the conduct of public affairs, directly or through freely chosen representatives;

(b) To vote and to be elected at genuine periodic elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret ballot, guaranteeing the free expression of the will of the electors;

(c) To have access, on general terms of equality, to public service in his country.”

The second chapter: the legislative framework governing the electoral process

The Egyptian parliamentary elections 2020 are taking place in a legislative environment characterized by legitimacy and represents the collective will of the nation, and it proceeds as follows:

First, the Egytian Constitution

The Egyptian constitution stipulates in Article (87) of the constitution that citizen participation in public life is a national duty, and every citizen has the right to vote, run for office, and express opinion in referendums. The law regulates the directness of these rights, and exemption from fulfilling this duty may be made in specific cases specified by law. The name of every citizen is in the voter database without his request, whenever the voter eligibility are met, and you are obligated to periodically filter this base in accordance with the law. The state guarantees the integrity, impartiality and integrity of referendums and elections procedures, and it is prohibited to use public money, government interests, public utilities, places of worship, business sector institutions, associations and civil institutions for political or electoral advertising purposes.

The Egyptian constitution refers in its articles organizing the parliament from Article (101) to Article (138). In chapter five of the constitution on the system of government, article 101 of it came to deal with the functions and tasks of the legislative body, which stipulated that “The House of Representatives is entrusted with legislative authority, and with approving the general policy of the state, the general plan of economic and social development and the state budget. It exercises oversight over the actions of the executive authority. All the foregoing takes place as set out by the Constitution.”

Article 102 specifies the number of council seats are not to be less than four hundred and fifty members, who are elected by direct, secret, general suffrage, provided that women are allocated no less than a quarter of the total number. The article also stipulates that a candidate for membership in the Council must be Egyptian, enjoying his civil and political rights, possessing a certificate of completion of at least basic education, and that his age should not be less than twenty five years of age on the day of candidacy.

As for the division of districts and the electoral system, the constitution did not specify a specific percentage or a specific division, but rather an indication that fair representation of the population and governorates should be taken into account, and it is permissible to adopt the individual or existing electoral system or combine any ratio between them. The President of the Republic may also appoint a number of members in the House of Representatives not exceeding 5%. The law defines how they are nominated. All of this is in the manner stated in Article 102 of the Egyptian Constitution.

The National Elections Commission Decision No. 52 of 2020 inviting voters to the House of Representatives elections:

The Supreme Election Commission has set polling dates for the Egyptian House of Representatives elections abroad, which will take place on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday 21, 22 and 23 October, while they will be held indoors on Saturday and Sunday 24 and 25 next October, provided that the results for the first phase will be announced no later than November 1 2020.

According to the decisions of the National Elections Commission regarding the elections to the House of Representatives 2020, the election process will take place in two phases according to the following dates:

The first stage in the (14) districts of governorates is:

Giza, Fayoum, Beni Suef, Minya, Assiut, New Valley, Sohag, Qena, Luxor, Aswan, Red Sea, Alexandria, Beheira, Matrouh,

The second stage in the departments of (13) governorates is:

Cairo, Qalyubia, Dakahlia, Menoufia, Gharbia, Kafr El Sheikh, Sharkia, Damietta, Port Said, Ismailia, Suez, North Sinai, South Sinai

As for advertising, donations, and the curtailment of political money that play a fundamental role in the background spaces of developing societies, the National Elections Commission decision No. 64 of 2020 – regarding electoral campaigning controls stipulates the following:

  • Every candidate for membership in the House of Representatives, whether by individual system or by lists, has the right to prepare and practice electoral propaganda to address the voters to convince them of his electoral program. This can be accomplished by publishing and distributing election campaign materials, placing posters and banners according to the terms and duration specified by the competent administration authority, and using audio, visual, print and electronic media, and other activities, in complete freedom in all ways permitted by law and within the framework of the controls and rules contained in the Constitution, the law and decisions The National Elections Commission in this regard.
  • It is prohibited to receive any contributions or cash or in-kind support to spend on the candidate’s electoral campaigning from any of: – An Egyptian or foreign legal person, a foreign state or entity, or an international organization, an entity whose capital is contributed by an Egyptian or foreign person or legal person, or any foreign entity whatever Its legal form was a foreign person.
  • The National Elections Commission, in accordance with the Law on the Exercise of Political Rights and its amendments, has determined the cases in which a candidate may be disqualified for the House of Representatives elections, and the procedures for eliminating candidates, whether by the individual or the list system. If a candidate has committed a violation of the controls stipulated in the constitution, the law, or the authority’s decisions regarding electoral campaigning, the president of the commission must submit a request to the Supreme Administrative Court to remove this candidate’s name from the final list to run in the constituency, provided that it includes the facts, evidence and supporting documents that the candidate has committed the violation.

The third chapter: the electoral system and its theoretical dilemmas

The debate over the principle, nature, extent, forms, degrees, and distractions of the election has allowed for the emergence of numerous and contradictory theories and opinions that all fall within the framework of so-called electoral systems. It explains the existence of formulas and procedures that enable the ruled to exercise political power.

In earlier stages of human history, elections were not an ordinary matter because the ruler derived his influence and the legitimacy of his rule from the divine right and from the family. However, the ruling systems in the world have evolved in tandem with the development of the discussion about the just and legitimate basis for those who demand the right to rule and power. From the philosophers of Athens to the philosophers of the European Renaissance, political thought resulted in the role of the constituents in the political role of choosing their rulers. This led to the establishment of a system of checks and balances leading to the establishment of political systems and oversight and legislative bodies governed by the public will, and for which the legislative body always expresses respect for the rights of Man and his individual freedom.

First, the Electoral System: The electoral system works, in its basic concept, by translating the votes cast in elections into the number of seats won by the parties and candidates participating in them. From here it defines technical rules, which are intended to favor the candidates in the election, or as David Farrell notes “the method by which votes are converted into seats in the process of electing politicians to fill certain positions.”[2]

The forms of electoral systems in force in countries have varied. Countries may differentiate from time to time between a system and a system according to their practical and political requirements. Countries may also decide on the way votes will be calculated (the majority, proportional, or mixed pluralism systems), what is the mathematical formula used to calculate the seats allocated to each winner, the composition of the ballot paper, does the voter vote for one candidate or for a party list, and can he express one option or a group of options?

Likewise, the same applies to electoral districts and the administrative aspects of the electoral process, such as the distribution of polling stations, the nomination of candidates, the registration of voters, the administrative apparatus of the electoral process, etc. However, these issues are of great importance as ignoring them undermines the desired benefits of any electoral system.

In the end, it remains that the design of the electoral system is closely related to the political system and the rules for accessing power. Therefore, we find that studying these systems should not be done in isolation from the institutional and political framework for each state, because the same system does not work in the same way in different countries, and each political system has an environment that is affected and influenced by it.

Second: The difference between the absolute and relative list advantages and disadvantages:

  1. The single electoral system:

This electoral system is based on dividing the country into small constituencies, so that each constituency sends one deputy to the representative body. In the single electoral system the voter selects one of the candidates in the electoral process in his constituency. As such the number of electoral districts is large in the single electoral system, as it would match the number of representatives elected throughout the country.[3]

Perhaps one of the advantages of this system is that it leads to the development of communication mechanisms between the candidate and the voter who due to the small size of the constituencies. This facilitates familiarity and knowledge of the person and the candidate’s background. Indeed, it becomes clear that in the single election system there is only one seat and every voter casts only one vote.

The single electoral system helps in the proliferation of electoral districts and facilitates the maintenance of personal contact between the electorate and its voter. Egypt has adopted the single election system from the 1923 constitution until the 1971 constitution.

However, there is no ideal system. Everything has its advantages and disadvantages, and the individual system has several disadvantages, the most important of which are: It is not based on integrated party programs that offer solutions to general political, economic and social problems that occupy the nation and the people, but the choice of individuals may be limited to kinship and relations. In some cases, the electorate is chosen based on ethnic and cultural reasons, which happens in some governorates, particularly in Upper Egypt, South and North Sinai, as well as the New Valley and Matrouh, in which the election is based on tribal and sectarian grounds and not on the basis of electoral programs. In addition, minorities are not allowed to be represented in electoral districts because the majority who vote will overlook the capabilities of the candidates.

In addition, the same candidate may become a prisoner of his electors in the individual system, which leads to the advancement of private interests over the public interest in the country. Moreover, bribery in order to ensure victory in the election is common in the single electoral system. Indeed, because of the spread of this phenomena in previous parliaments, the MPs deliberately caused riots in Parliament, using buzz words in front of the cameras in order to appear before their supporters, often neglecting the public interest.

  1. List electoral system:

The list system is based on the fact that the voter, unlike the previous system referred to, votes on a list that contains a number of candidates who either represent one political party or a group of parties. In this system the electoral districts are relatively large because the list will include a number of candidates for a number of the seats, unlike the individual system, in which one candidate is voted on for one seat.[4]

In the list system, there are a set of questions related to the voter’s right regarding the type of voting, in the sense of whether he has the right to vote on parts of the list and not others? In other words, can the voter affect the composition of the list or the order of the candidates. These problems are of three types from the list, which we refer to very briefly.

  1. Closed list

The closed list is a fixed list and the voter cannot change the order of the candidates, which means that the voter gives his vote to the entire list with all the candidates equally without making any changes to the list.. This leads to a reduction in the voter’s freedom. The essence and truth of the matter is that he does not vote freely and with an independent will, as the electoral process is limited to merely raising the list that has been built and with coordination between political parties unilaterally or collectively, which distorts the entire democratic process.

Some Egyptian parties that intend to enter the parliament elections 2020, including the Egyptian Social Democratic Party, objected to the closed-list election system. They argued that the closed-list election system wastes more than 49 percent of the votes, causes huge constituencies to expand, and needs clear electoral alliances. This reality drives small parties to seek an alliance with other parties for the sake of competitiveness.[5] However, other parties see it as a good system that guarantees the representation of specific groups in parliament that would not have existed in parliament without the closed list, which would have disturbed the social representation in the legislature.

It is also worth noting that the closed list with preference deals with the absolute defect of the closed list, by allowing the voter to indicate their preferences of different candidates on the list.

As such, closed lists constitute half of the seats in the next Parliament in 2020 for which 4 groups represented by dozens of political and ideological parties and sects are competing. There will be 568 main candidates, with the addition of the reserve seats, the total number of seats jumps to 1136. Accordingly, 50% of the parliament is offered through the individual electoral system, with about 4 Thousands and 6 candidates, including 3 thousand and 128 independents at a rate of 68%. 878 of the candidates are representatives of 36 different parties, of which 6 major parties account for 625 candidates representing 71% of the partisans. Each seat on the list and 14 individually, and with an average of 9 contestants for each seat in the council, levels that far exceed the previous parliaments throughout the last half century[6].The most dangerous thing is that 68 parties representing 65% of the square were absent from the scene, and 23 of the participants decreased their individual presence in 253 candidates.

The proportional list:

    The proportional list system is based on the idea that each political party should submit a list of candidates in each of the multi-representative constituencies. Voters vote for the parties, with each political party winning a share of constituency seats proportional to its share of the electorate. Candidates on the party lists will win the election, according to their hierarchical order on the list. A number of issues must be taken into consideration to determine how the proportional list system works, the approved system may require passing a specific threshold in order to obtain representation in the elected legislative body, in some countries a high percentage of up to 10% is set, which results in the exclusion of small parties, while a low percentage of 1.5% may allow them, as is the case in some countries.

National Dialogue:

A number of political parties at the headquarters of the Nation’s future party, before amending the election law, conducted a “national dialogue” concerning the laws organizing the elections. The heads of the parties discussed (Nation’s future party, The Wafd, The Assembly, Reform and Development, Justice, The Egyptian Democracy, Al-Ghad, The Republican People, The Conservatives, The Conference ), Where Wafd party presented its vision for the elections with a percentage of 75% in the closed list and 25% by the individual system, and Justice Party also settled on the proportional list: two-thirds of a list and the third is individual, while the Reform and Development Party proposed that the party has a preliminary agreement that the elections of “senates and representatives” will take place, With the open and not closed proportional list at the level of the Republic. without any individual seats, the competition will shift in favor of businessmen and influential people who are able to decide positions.

Opinions were divided and we can summarize it into two main directions:

An opinion that suggests : an open list proportional system to ensure that 49% of the number of votes are not wasted.

Another opinion that suggest: a closed list system to ensure the representation of the different social groups and segments in the society.

Fourth Theme: Empowering Women and Youth:

Women in Parliament 2020:

In recent decades, there has been a clear increase in the frequency of calls for empowering women and making room for their participation in public life as a primary actor, and on top of these calls is the issue of women’s political participation in Egypt and the opportunities available to them to access all decision-making positions, whether at the state level or in civil society organizations.

Despite the importance role of women, they were not allowed to participate in political life in Egypt until recently and after the efforts done by the women’s movements since 1925, and the first time they were allowed to participate in political life and to run for parliament elections was in 1957, and the rate of women’s participation in Parliament was 6.0% and increased to 5% in 1962[7].

And due to the weak representation of women in the Egyptian parliament, where the percentage of women in the 2005 parliament was only 4 women out of 127 candidates[8], and in conjunction with the global trend calling for the political, economic and social empowerment of women as partners in life and in building states, the Egyptian state tended to allocate what was known as The “quota” to force political parties to push for female candidates on the electoral lists, which was a step forward to enhancing the role of women in political life.

A quota was allocated to women in 1979 by adding 30 seats for women as a minimum. Thus, the representation of women reached 8%. Despite the low percentage, it was a successful experience and women felt the importance of their role. That’s why the percentage of women in the current Egyptian parliament increased to reach 25% after the Egyptian state made a great effort to improve the status of women and to consolidate the principle of equal opportunities and equality, The 2014 constitution was also a push forward, as it included articles that support women in various fields. The percentage of women representation reached from 2% in 2013 to 15% In 2018, and 25% in 2019, according to the constitutional amendments in the same year[9].

The national list that competed in all electoral districts and with the largest number of candidates included wives of the army martyrs, who were killed in terrorist attacks in Egypt during the recent years, such as; Eman Abdel kader, the district of the Cairo, south and central delta, and she is the widow of the martyr Adel Abdel Hamid Eid Hassan, who was martyred in the Bir Lahfan area. Also the list included Rehab abdelghani the wife of the martyr “Ahmed shahata ” who was killed on 25 februrary 2020 in Karam al kawdes, northern sinai.  adding the wives of the armed forces’s martyrs to the national list was widely criticized, an was perceived meaningless in terms of democracy, it was further said that it’s our duty to honor the martyrs  but to place their wives in the legislative bodies that legislates the nation’s laws offendes the electoral process, and emptene it of its meaning.

The Youth:

youth represent the largest segment of Egypt’s population[10], reaching 60% of the total population, and the state strongly relies on them in building the future of the state. The presence of youth in the society increases the capabilities of the society, but it also raises some problems, as when youth make up the largest proportion in society it results in an unstable political situation, driven By their well in changing their societies, as youth is considered the  period in which a person can give himself completely to a political purpose, ideological principle, or desired ideal, in this world or the hereafter… In the absence of political channels, the crisis exacerbates, especially if it is accompanied by high rates of Unemployment[11].

The recent circumstances and conditions in Egypt produced a state of political instability. Youth formed the backbone of this situation, which prompted the Egyptian state to give utmost importance to the issue of empowering youth and placing them in leadership positions within state institutions and society.

 In order to avoid the mistakes of the past, practical steps have emerged in integrating youth into various executive institutions, as the Prime Minister issued Decree No. 1592 of 2014 authorizing ministers to choose their assistants, as well as Resolution No. (93) of 2015 appointing 4 assistants for each minister, in each agency Separately, assistants were appointed for urban planning, urban communities and facilities, and Prime Minister Dr. Mostafa Madbouly was not satisfied with the decision of his assistants only, but also issued a ministerial decree appointing youth engineering assistants to heads of new cities’ agencies for a year, and then many ministries proceeded to appoint youth assistants to ministers[12] .

Likewise, in appointing governors, which included 39 new governors and a deputy governors,  60% of them were youth, 16 of them were appointed as governors and 23 as deputies, and the number of youth came to 25, including two governors, and 23 deputy governors[13].

Not to mention the youth conferences that President Al-Sisi himself attends, as well as the presidential program to train youth and qualify them for leadership positions. President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi launched, on 9/13/2015, the “Presidential Program for Youth Leadership Qualification” with the aim of creating a strong and rich base of youth competencies to be qualified for political and administrative work. This is in addition to the African Youth Forum, the Arab African Youth Forum, and the World Youth Forum. The President also issued Republican Decree No. 434 of 2017 to establish the National Academy for Training and Rehabilitation of Youth, which aims to achieve the goals of human development for youth in all sectors of the state and upgrade their capabilities and skills.

The 2020 Egyptian Parliamentary elections takes place in a context of youth empowerment, as recent amendments in the Law Regulating the Exercise of Political Rights No. 45 of 2014, Parliament Law No. 46 of 2014, and Law No. 198 of 2017 Concerning the National Elections Commission, necessitated that for any list with 100 seats to be considered it has to include the following: nine Christian candidates, six workers and peasants ’candidates, six youth candidates, three persons with disabilities candidates, three Egyptian candidates living abroad, at least 50 women must be among those possessing these characteristics[14].

And the National List for Egypt, which consists of 12 political parties, has allocated 26 seats in the list to be from the “Coordination of Party’s youth leaders and Politicians” (CPYP), In addition to the latter winning 5 seats in the Senate, to increase the total representative representation of the CPYP to 31 seats in Parliament[15], which raises many questions about its nature , as the coordination was established recently, and did not own a headquarter until 2020, and held a lot of seminars and conferences, and despite all of this, the coordination had succeeded in winning 5 seats in the Senate, which raises some questions concerning its legal basis. The coordination actually began with a group of youth who participated in youth forums, and later a group of youth parties joined it, to call themselves the (CPYP). There are also lots of questions about the support they get from various governmental institutions and agencies.

Socialist Youth Organization:

When we think of the (CPYP), the first thing that pops up to our minds is the “Socialist Youth Organization” in (1964), which was a real organization from the base to the summit but affiliated with the Socialist Union, although its formation was almost independent. The organization was back then affiliated with the secretary of the socialist union, Ali Sabri.

The Socialist Youth Organization provided the Egyptian society with a new generation of leaders during the sixties and seventies of the twentieth century. This generation revived vitality in mass organizations, renewed political life, provided the country with a new leadership elite and stood up in response to the policies of 1952 revolution. Some of those leaders are still actively influencing the political life in Egypt[16].

The fifth theme: The struggle for the seat and the challenges of forming lists:

Since the call to the 2020 parliamentary elections, a fierce battle was waged in conjunction with this announcement within the political parties themselves, and between the political parties that wrestled over the number of seats they represented on the closed list.

The Electoral District Law of the House of Representatives stipulates that the republic is divided into 143 electoral districts devoted to the single system elections, and 4 electoral districts devoted to the list system election, in which 4 lists compete, and the National List for Egypt competes in the four constituencies, which includes 12 political parties They are “Nation’s future party, the Wafd Party, the Homeland Protectors Party, the Modern Egypt Party, the Egyptian Democratic Party, the Republican People’s Party, Reform and Development, Al-Tagammu ‘, Will of a Generation, the Egyptian Freedom Party, Al-Adl, and the Conference”, in addition to the CYPY.

This list, for which the “Nation’s future party” is the main core of it, is competing with the biggest share in the distribution of shares within it, which has captured 70% of the seats in the Senate, competing with the list of the Independents Alliance, which It includes some public figures and the New Independents Party. This competition is confined to Cairo, South and Central Delta constituencies. And the National List competes for 100 seats.

Number of parties participating in the electoral process:

More than 36 political parties will participate in the upcoming elections to the House of Representatives, competing in 4 districts at the list level and for 284 seats for the individual.

The National List competes with the “Sons of Egypt” list for 42 seats in the East Delta district. The “National List” also faces the “Call of Egypt” list in the remaining two constituencies, with 42 seats in the West Delta and 100 seats in the Upper Egypt district.

It seems clear to the eye that the national list that competed in all circles, in addition to pushing many candidates for individual seats, which includes in its ranks a group of parties supporting and opposing the current political system, and from which it was not easy to form the list dominated by the Future of the Nation party close to The political power in the country, a matter that sparked a wave of internal disputes between the parties and their share in the list, and within the parties themselves over the criteria for joining and nominating their members on that list.

Number of parties participating in the electoral process:

More than 36 political parties will participate in the upcoming elections to the House of Representatives, competing in 4 districts at the list level and for 284 seats for the individual.

The National List competes with the “Sons of Egypt” list for 42 seats in the East Delta district. The “National List” also faces the “Call of Egypt” list in the remaining two constituencies, with 42 seats in the West Delta and 100 seats in the Upper Egypt district.

It seems very clear that the national list which competes in all circles, and which pushed many candidates for individual seats, and included a number of pro and anti government parties, and thus it was not easy for this list to be dominated by the Nation’s future party, which is considered a pro government part and very close to state elites.  This was a matter that sparked a wave of internal disputes between the parties and their share in the list, and within the parties themselves over the criteria for joining and nominating their members on that list.

The Wafdist crisis was a prominent example that reflects a severe partisan crisis threatening internal cohesion due to the nomination of its members on the national list, as the Wafd Party recently witnessed sharp disagreements between members of the supreme committee of the party and the party president, following Wafad’s share issue in the national list for the House of Representatives elections, this is in addition to the problem of the party president’s daughter himself. Which was among those pushed by the party at the top of the national list.

In the wake of this dispute, the Supreme committee announced, for its part, that the party leader, Counselor, Bahaa Abu Shaqah, is practicing an illegitimate decision that goes against the party rules, and thus he will  be cut off from the party. Furthermore the supreme body announced that the party will withdraw from the national list[17].

The problem with Wafd is that the party knew that it would only be represented by a limited number of candidates, as the Nation’s future party has suggested to included 13 women in the name of Al Wafad, of whom 8 were from the Nation’s future party itself but would run in the elections in the name of Al Wafad, and six men, only two of them are from Al Wafad and four from Nation’s future party[18].

Besides the crisis of Al Wafad’s share in the national list, there is another issue that is more severe, which is the issue of Dr. Amira Abu Shaqqa, the daughter of Counselor Baha Abu Shaqqa, head of the Wafd Party, where he faced accusations of inheritance, courtesies, and upholding private and personal interests ( Abu Shaqqa’s son is the legal advisor to the President of the Republic)  on the interest of the party and the national interest. Where Dr. Amira was on the national list despite her very limited political activity compared to others who were much more qualified than her, among them is “Raef Tamraz”. Furthermore, the names that were added to the list were not discussed in the meetings of the supreme committee[19].

The party and Abu Shaqah issued 30 statements in response to these criticisms within 48 hours from its supporters,representatives among the senators and candidates on the list. It included support to Abu Shaqah in making the decisions he deems appropriate for the party, whether from separating opponents or nominating whom he deems suitable for seats in Parliament.

This crisis is still present, after the Administrative Court rejected the appeal decision, despite the al wafad’s participation on the national list with its candidates[20].

In general, it can be said that these manifestations carry a deviation from the correct democratic path, which could deprive Egypt of the existence of real competition in its parliaments, which is what the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights warns of, to avoid a disruption that may occur as a result of those practices that threaten to empty the Democratic process of its true meanings and contents. Also to avoid the outbreak of what is known as a “legitimacy crisis” for the next parliament, due to the receding of its seats, which leads to a decrease in popular support, which leads to a gap and a vacuum between the elected institutions and the citizens, which may result in protests and cause instability in the Egyptian society.


[1] ipulates the following:The Supreme Elections Authority, Law 46 of the 2014 Egyptian Parliament Elections

[2]  زهرة بن علي” دور النظام الانتخابي في إصلاح النظم السياسية: دراسة مقارنة” رسالة دكتوراه، جامعة أبي بكر، الجزائر 2015،ص 71.

[3] Ibid.

[4]  أندرو رينولدز وأخرين ” أشكال النظم الانتخابية” دليل المؤسسة الدولية للديمقراطية والانتخابات، متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://www.idea.int/

[5]  BBC”انتخابات مجلس النواب” متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://www.bbc.com/arabic/middleeast-54452226

[6] جريدة صوت الأمة ” الأسئلة المسكوت عنها” متاح علي الرابط التالي: http://www.soutalomma.com/Article/943523/%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A3%D8%B3%D8%A6%D9%84%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%B3%D9%83%D9%88%D8%AA-%D8%B9%D9%86%D9%87%D8%A7-%D8%A8%D8%B4%D8%A3%D9%86-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%82%D8%A7%D8%A6%D9%85%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%B7%D9%86%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D9%85%D9%86-%D8%A3%D8%AC%D9%84-%D9%85%D8%B5%D8%B1-%D9%87%D9%84

[7] الهيئة العامة للاستعلامات” المرأة في السلطة التشريعية” متاح علي الموقع الإلكتروني للهيئة: https://www.sis.gov.eg/Story/116462/%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%B1%D8%A3%D8%A9-%D9%81%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B3%D9%84%D8%B7%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D8%B4%D8%B1%D9%8A%D8%B9%D9%8A%D8%A9?lang=ar

[8] Ibid

[9] Ibid

[10] ibid

[11]   جمال أبو الحسن”  الديمغرافيا القاتلة في الشرق الأوسط” متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://daqaeq.net/%d8%b9%d9%86-%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%af%d9%8a%d9%85%d9%88%d8%ba%d8%b1%d8%a7%d9%81%d9%8a%d8%a7-%d8%a7%d9%84%d9%82%d8%a7%d8%aa%d9%84%d8%a9-%d9%81%d9%8a-%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%b4%d8%b1%d9%82-%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%a3%d9%88/

[12]   جريدة الأهرام الرسمية بتاريخ 8/3/2015، متاح علي الرابط التالي: http://gate.ahram.org.eg/News/606532.aspx

[13]  قرارات مجلس الوزراء المصري بتاريخ 27/2/2019، متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://cabinet.gov.eg/Arabic/MediaCenter/CabinetNews/Pages/%D9%85%D8%A4%D8%AA%D9%85%D8%B1%D8%B5%D8%AD%D9%81%D9%8A-%D9%84%D8%B1%D8%A6%D9%8A%D8%B3-%D9%85%D8%AC%D9%84%D8%B3-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D8%B2%D8%B1%D8%A7%D8%A1-%D8%B9%D9%86-%D8%AA%D8%B9%D9%8A%D9%8A%D9%86-%D9%85%D8%AD%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%B8%D9%8A%D9%86-%D9%88%D9%86%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%A8-%D8%AC%D8%AF%D8%AF.aspx

[14]  الهيئة العامة للاستعلامات” المرأة في السلطة التشريعية” متاح علي الموقع الإلكتروني للهيئة: https://www.sis.gov.eg/Story/116462/%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%B1%D8%A3%D8%A9-%D9%81%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B3%D9%84%D8%B7%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D8%B4%D8%B1%D9%8A%D8%B9%D9%8A%D8%A9?lang=ar

[15] تنسيقية شباب الأحزاب والسياسيين، الموقع الرسمي، متاح عل الرابط التالي: https://cpyp.net/?fbclid=IwAR03j70rT4O1gscrrrT-xZUQM1P_8ES6IC0HQogGsifuraUrzyLxd5

MsfWo

[16]   عبد الغفار شاكر” منظمة الشباب الاشتراكي: تجربة مصرية في إعداد القيادات 1963 – 1976″ مركز دراسات الوحدة العربية، بيروت،2005،ص1_10

[17]   جريدة الوطن ” انسحاب الوفد من القائمة” متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://www.elwatannews.com/news/details/4986400

[18]   جريدة العرب “التحالفات الانتخابية وخلافات الوفد” متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://alarab.news/%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D8%AD%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%81%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A7%D9%86%D8%AA%D8%AE%D8%A7%D8%A8%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%AA%D9%81%D8%AC%D8%B1-%D8%AE%D9%84%D8%A7%D9%81%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%AE%D9%84-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%88%D9%81%D8%AF-%D8%A3%D9%82%D8%AF%D9%85-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A3%D8%AD%D8%B2%D8%A7%D8%A8-%D8%A7%D9%84%D9%85%D8%B5%D8%B1%D9%8A%D8%A9

[19]   جريدة المصري اليوم “أزمة الوفد بوضع ابنة أبو شقة بالقائمة المرشحة لانتخابات النواب” متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://www.almasryalyoum.com/news/details/2032525

[20]   جريدة الرئيس ” غضب الوافدين وابنة أبو شقة” متاح علي الرابط التالي: https://www.alraeesnews.com/69489

Category: Reports | Comments Off on The Political and Legislative Environment of the 2020 Parliamentary Elections | 480 views

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights’s Report on the rulings of the Administrative Court concerning the 2020 Parliament elections’s appeals

October 14th, 2020 by Editor


Law No. 46 of 2014 of the House of Representatives deals with the regulation of appeals issued against decisions of the Supreme Elections Committee in Article (16) that: “Anyone who applies to run for elections and whose name is not mentioned in the list prepared for this, may appeal against the committee’s decision stipulated in Article (15) of this. Each candidate also has the right to appeal against the committee’s decision to include the name of any of the candidates, or by providing an incorrect characteristic in front of his name, or the name of other candidates in the list in which his name is listed, “as Article (17) of it has stipulated that: “The appeal against the decision issued by the committee stipulated in Article (15) of this law shall be before the Administrative Court within three days starting from the date on which the lists and the names of the candidates are presented. The court shall decide on the appeal within five days at most.”

The House of Representatives elections will kick off for Egyptians living abroad on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 21, 22 and 23 October, and will take place inside Egypt on Saturday and Sunday 24 and 25 of the same month, provided that the results for the first phase will be announced no later than November 1, 2020.

   The final list of candidates in the House of Representatives elections included 4,032 individual candidates competing for 50% of the 284 seats, and 8 lists with a list system, two of these lists competing for 100 seats in each of the two constituencies within the 4 constituencies, namely the National List and the Independents While the other two are competing for 42 seats in each of the other two constituencies, namely the National List and the Sons of Egypt.

The Administrative Court received appeals against Parliament elections, from candidates who were excluded from running in the elections, as well as from persons contesting the inclusion of names of some candidates. The number of appeals has reached more than 136.

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights monitored a set of electoral appeals filed before the Administrative Court. Related to the 2020 Parliament elections. The Supreme Administrative Court ruled a set of rulings regarding the appeals submitted to it. The topics of the cases examined by the court included a candidate challenging the non-acceptance of his candidacy papers by the National Elections Commission, while other cases included an appeal for not including the names of some applicants on the lists of candidates despite their papers being accepted by the committee, and these are the most prominent provisions:

Some judgments issued by the Supreme Administrative Court:

First: Appeal No. 383 of 67, of the Penal law, submitted by / Muhammad Samir Muhammad Ahmad, against the President of the National Elections Commission, and agnist the Head of the Examination Committee, inoder to Appeal against the ruling issued by the Administrative Court in Cairo (First district ) in Case No. (61475) for the year 74, penal law, in a hearing of 10/1/2020.

The reason for the appeal: He applied for candidacy for membership in the House of Representatives 2020 in Cairo governorate for District No. 1, which is based in “Al Gamalia” on

individual seats, and submitted all the required documents, and despite that, the committee excluded his name from the lists of candidates, which led him to Filing his lawsuit.

The Examination committee for nomination’s applications decided not to accept the applicant’s nomination request based on the absence of wife’s signature on the financial disclosure, which indicates that the candidate has violated one of the essential conditions required by the law, which is the obligation to sign a financial disclosure statement from the candidate and his wife, as it was found that he signed Under the husband’s signature box, then he added the wife’s name below his signature.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: The legislator established in the law the determination of financial disclosures, on the designated and prepared form for this, and in which a decision is issued by the Minister of Justice. Required for the integrity of the statement, and that this statement is not intentional in itself; Rather, what is intended is to complete the necessary data for the validity of the declaration and its reliability.

For these reasons: the court has decided to accept the appeal formally, and in the matter to cancel the appealed judgment, and to judge again to cancel the appealed against with the consequent indication in the manner indicated by the reasons and ordered the implementation of the judgment in its draft without announcement.

Second: Appeal No. 236 of 67 Penal law, submitted by Hazem Fathi Al-Sayed Hussein Maree, against the President of the National Elections Authority, and the Chairman of the Committee for monitoring the Electoral Process of the House of Representatives, to the South Cairo First Instance Court – district (17), and against the minister of the Interior. Appeals against the judgment issued by the Administrative Court in Cairo (First district) in Case No. (61465) for the year 74 penal law, in a hearing of 1/10/2020.

The reason for the appeal: he applied to run for the House of Representatives 2020 elections individually, on behalf of the constituency No. 7, located in Al-Basateen, and submitted all the required documents before the committee, but he was surprised by his exclusion from the lists of those admitted to the elections, without legal basis. On the pretext that he did not fulfill the condition of performing military service or being exempt from it. He applied for military service upon completion of his undergraduate studies by obtaining a Bachelor of Science and Education from Ain Shams University, but he was not called to perform his military service; as the armed forces did not need at this time to accept a new batch and a certificate was issued with the above information, However, the committee disregarded this testimony and did not consider it, and issued its contested decision.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: The legislator aimed to stipulate the performance of compulsory military service or exemption from it while running for membership in the House of Representatives to ascertain the sincerity of the candidate’s affiliation and loyalty to his country, and that whoever evaded them would not be eligible to represent the nation in its parliament and the interests of citizens.

It was found that the candidate had proven that he had performed military service by placing him on demand for 3 years, and after 3 years had passed since he was granted this certificate, a certificate from the Ministry of Defense was issued to him on 7/15/2003 regarding his recruiting treatment that he had not been called by the military.   and therefore it is not permissible to recruit the contestant except In case of war or mobilization. Accordingly, the testimony is counted by determining the position that he was not called upon to perform the military service sufficient in itself to determine his final position, which was confirmed by his reaching the age of thirty and obtaining the final exemption certificate, thus he would have fulfilled the condition of performing military service.

For these reasons: the court ruled to accept the appeal formally, and cancel the appealed ruling, and ruled again to cancel the contested decision regarding the exclusion of  the name of the appellant from the lists of accepted candidates, and it ordered the implementation of the judgment with its draft without announcement, and obliged the administrative body to pay for the expenses of the two levels of litigation.

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Third: Appeal No. 249 of 67 Penal law, established by Osama Abdullah Saleh, against the  President of the National Elections Authority, and against the Chairman of the Committee to Examine Candidates for Candidacy in Parliament Elections; Appeals against the ruling issued by the Administrative Court (First district) in Case No. (61473) for the year 74 BC, at a hearing of 10/1/2020.

The reason for the appeal: He submitted his candidacy papers for the House of Representatives elections for the seventh district in Giza governorate, and he had completed all the required papers, but he was surprised by his exclusion from the lists of candidates admitted to the lists without evidence, and he appealed against this decision.

The court examined the case and issued its contested judgment, and its judiciary was constructed on the basis that it was proven from the papers that he mentioned in the financial disclosure statement submitted by him that he was separated from his wife, and the acknowledgment was based on that without his wife’s signature, and he did not present the divorce papers indicating that , Which is considered a violation to one of the essential conditions required by law, which is that the declaration must be signed by the candidate and his wife, and that it must be submitted within the period of  acceptance of the candidacy applications.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: The legislator excluded those who were not married from signing the financial disclosure declaration, otherwise there can not be any exclusions. In his case, The financial disclosure statement was made free of the wife’s data because he was separated from her, and he did not present the divorce papers that proved this. However, there were other papers that can be used as a proof of his divorce. In addition to that, the appellant was divorced from his wife on 12/13/2019 and that he submitted his candidacy application on 9/26/2020, accompanied by the required documents according to the law, including the financial disclosure statement, and he mentioned in the wife’s signature box in the declaration that he is divorced, He also mentioned in his CV form that he is single and all of the above was under the sight of the committee receiving candidacy applications, Furthermore, he submitted a copy of the divorce papers, and thus the financial disclosure for him shall fulfill all the legal conditions required according to the provisions of the law.

For these reasons: the court ruled to accept the appeal in form and to cancel the appealed judgment, and to judge again to cancel the appealed decision issued by the committee to examine and decide on candidacy applications in the South Giza Court of First Instance, and to re-add the name of the contestant to the lists of candidates.

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Fourth: Appeal No. 256 of 67 penal law, established by Medhat Awad Mustafa Al-Sharif, against the President of the National Elections Authority, and the Head of the Committee for Examining Candidacy Applications; Appeals against the judgment issued by the Administrative Court (First district) in Case No. (61540) for the year 74 penal law, at a hearing of 1/10/2020.

The reason for the appeal: The candidate was surprised that his name was not included in the list prepared for the 2020 House of Representatives elections for the individual and independent constituency (6) based in Nasr City and Heliopolis, because he was working as an officer in the armed forces and that his candidacy file was not approval by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, and that the candidate admitted So.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: that the appellant has submitted to the committee a certificate stating that he was a former officer in the armed forces, and the approval of the application submitted by him to run for elections as established by the official certificate issued on 3/9/2020 from the Department of Officers Affairs in the Armed Forces, thus, he fulfilled this condition, and thus the armed forces did agreed to his candidacy for the elections before submitting his application, and so, the contested decision to exclude him from candidacy is not based on a justified cause.

For these reasons: the court ruled to accept the appeal in form and to cancel the appealed judgment, and to judge again to cancel the decision of the nomination applications examination committee concerning the exclusion of his name from the list prepared for the House of Representatives 2020 elections of the (6) independent and individual constituency located in Nasr City and Heliopolis, and to cancel the contested decision And the consequent effects of that, and obligated the administration court to pay all the expenses of litigation, and ordered the implementation of the judgment and its draft.

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Fifth: Appeal No. 512 for the year 67 in the Penal Code. This appeal was made on behalf of Hisham Ahmed Mustafa Abdel Akher, against the President of the National Elections Authority in his capacity, and the Head of the Giza Governorate General Committee (Chairman of the Candidacy Examination Committee) in his capacity. The appeal is against the judgment issued by the Administrative Court – First Circuit – in Case No. (61548) for the year 74 in the Penal Code, in a hearing on 10/10/2020.

The reason for the appeal: He submitted his candidacy papers for the House of Representatives elections for the seventh district in the Giza governorate and had completed all the required papers. However, when announcing the lists of accepted candidates he was excluded from it on a document, on the grounds that he had not presented his divorce document from Mrs. Awatif Ibrahim Ali. However, the claimant’s financial disclosure was received, devoid of any data on the wife.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: In terms of the aforementioned papers, it has been proven that the appellant divorced his wife on 10/24/2018 and that he submitted a request for his candidacy for elections to the examination committee on 9/26/2020 and mentioned in the wife’s signature box that he is divorced. The appellant also mentioned in his resume that he is single and in his national identification card, there was no listed marital status. As such, the legislator has specified that the financial disclosure declaration should be signed by the candidate and his wife. However, in the case that the applicant is unmarried or divorced, the requirement for the wife’s signature would be impossible as he has no wife.

For these reasons: The court ruled to accept the appeal formally. Moreover, in the matter regarding the cancellation of the appealed ruling, the judge will reexamine the contested decision issued by the Committee for Examining Candidacy Applications and deciding on them in the South Giza Court of First Instance with regard to the exclusion of the appellant’s name from the lists of candidates accepted for the House of Representatives elections for the year 2020 in the seventh district of the Giza governorate.

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Sixth: Appeal No. 457 of the year 67 in the Penal Code, instituted by Muhammad Hamid Muhammad Abdo, against the Chairman of the National Elections Authority in his capacity, the Chairman of the Committee supervising elections in Minya in his capacity, the Minister of Justice in his capacity, and the  Minister of Interior in his capacity And Mr. Alaa Mohamed Hassanein Mohamed; Appeals against the judgment issued by the Administrative Court in Minya in Case No. (14912) for the year 10 of the Penal Code, in a hearing on 1/10/2020.

The reason for the appeal: He submitted a request to run for the House of Representatives 2020 elections for the Deir Mawas constituency in Minya Governorate and attached the required documents to his request, and obtained No. 29. However, he was surprised to find the candidacy of Alaa Muhammad Hassanein was accepted under No. 4, despite the issuance of many criminal judgments against him, as well as many misdemeanors.  These judgments lose him the condition of having a good reputation as a condition for accepting his candidacy papers. As the defendant is notorious for his bad reputation, this led the appellant to file his lawsuit.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: Since the judgments issued to imprison the respondent against him are the fifth, and they are multiple and repeated, it clearly foretells that the fifth respondent dared to violate the law and failed to obey its provisions. As such the inclusion of the respondent in the lists of candidates accepted for the 2020 House of Representatives elections from the Deir Mawas Center district in Minya Governorate is null and void, as he had violated the rule of law, which provides for the seriousness of the request to stop its implementation.

For these reasons: the court ruled to accept the appeal formally, to cancel the appealed ruling, and to suspend the implementation of the contested decision. Most notably the exclusion of the name of the respondent, the fifth from the lists of candidates for the elections in Minya governorate, from the district of Dermawas, as indicated previously.

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Seventh: Appeal No. 266 for the year 67 in the Penal Code, presented by Muhammad Sami Muhammad Muhammad Suleiman, against Mr. Sami Rifat Mr. Abdel Aziz, the President of the National Elections Authority in his capacity, and the President of Damietta Court of First Instance in his capacity.

The reason for the appeal: The contested person, Sami Rifaat ElSayed Abdel Aziz, who is a candidate in the same district, had filed his lawsuit against Mr. Muhammad Sami, because he is a candidate for the House of Representatives elections 2020 on the individual system, the symbol of the cup, in the first constituency, located in Damietta. Mr. Abdel Aziz drafted an appeal against the defendant Muhammad Sami Muhammad Muhammad Suleiman – No.1, the missile symbol; Because he was previously a member of Nation’s Future party, after which he joined the Republican People’s Party, and he has not yet resigned from the Nation’s Future Party, in contravention of the political parties law. This prompted the appellant to file his lawsuit, with his previous requests, and that the candidate had submitted the financial disclosure and his wife did not sign it, when he signed his wife’s name in his name.

The reasons for accepting the appeal: It was proven from the papers that the appellant / Muhammad Sami Muhammad submitted his candidacy papers for the elections from the first constituency, which is located in Damietta, to the examination committee, and it was decided in the Damietta Court of First Instance, during the period determined by the President of the National Elections Authority No. The schedule issued on 9/10/2020, and among those papers was his and his wife’s financial disclosure statement, signed by the appellant Muhammad Sami Muhammad and his wife Mrs. Suzan Ezzat, then the aforementioned declaration would have fulfilled all its legal elements.

For these reasons: the court ruled to accept the appeal formally, and in the matter to cancel the appealed ruling, and to reexamine the case, and ordered the implementation of the judgment in its draft without notice, and obligated the first respondent to pay the expenses.

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Eighth: appeal No. 1 and 26 of the year 67 in the penal code. The first appeal is by Ahmed Zuhair Ahmed Abdul-Ghani Foley, against the President of the National Elections Authority in his capacity, and Mr. Shaheen Shakir Othman Kilani. The second appeal is from the President of the National Elections Authority Against Mr. Shaheen Shaker Othman Kilani; Appeals against the judgment issued by the Administrative Judiciary Court (First Circuit) in Assiut, in Case No. (17301) for the year 31 in the penal code, at a hearing on 9/29/2020.

The Appeal’s court decision: the court decided to accept the appeal of the decision to remove the plaintiff’s name from the list of accepted candidates to the House of Representatives for the year 2020 for the second constituency in Assiut governorate as an independent candidate and his electoral symbol is “the house”. Consequentially the inclusion of his name as a candidate for individual seats as a candidate for the National Future Party, and its electoral symbol is “the chandelier”, and the administrative body was obliged to pay the expenses.

Reasons for accepting the appeal: It is proven from the papers that the respondent submitted a request to run for the individual seat elections for the second district in Assiut, as a member of the Future Nation Party. He attached to his request a certificate indicating the party’s approval of his candidacy, but it was issued on 6/26/2020. However,  the aforementioned party notified the committee the applicant’s membership in the party expired, so the committee issued its decision to change his status from a party-candidate to an independent candidate.

For these reasons: the court ruled first: not to appeal No. “1” for the year 67 in the penal code and obligated the appellant to pay the expenses, and second: to accept the appeal No. “26” for the year 67 in the penal code in a higher form, to cancel the appealed ruling, and to reject the case, and the appellant obligated the expenses at the level of Litigation and ordered the implementation of the ruling draft without announcement.

In sum, it can be said that the submitted appeals ranged from a mistake in the integrity of the procedures to incomplete candidacy papers. Examples of some of these mistakes include the financial disclosure and the signature of the wife on it and changes in the electoral status of the candidates, as well as the mandates of the Military Council of former officers of the armed forces, who intend to run for the (2020) parliament elections.

Category: Reports | Comments Off on The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights’s Report on the rulings of the Administrative Court concerning the 2020 Parliament elections’s appeals | 497 views

International day of the Girl

October 12th, 2020 by Editor


Due to various reasons, girls all over the world face a number of problems that negatively contribute to limiting their rights and freedoms, including false cultural heritages that give preference to males over females, and external factors that prevent females from accessing their basic rights, such as the right to Education, health, work, etc. In addition to some societal misconceptions that limit their freedoms and rights.

From this standpoint, the world celebrates the International Day of the Girl every year on 11th of October, to shed light on the problems facing girls worldwide  and to raise awareness about them. The celebration of the day dates back to December 19, 2011, when the United Nations General Assembly adopted its resolution 66/170 to declare October 11 of each year the International Day of the Girl, In order  to shed the lights on the unique challenges that girls face in everyday life[1].

The importance of International Girls’ Day lies in its contribution to raising awareness of the inequality that girls are exposed to worldwide due to their gender. It also contributes to raising awareness of a number of issues such gender equality, underage marriage, the right to education and health care, and awareness on sexual violence issues. In addition, International Girls’ Day raises awareness about their economic, social and political rights. The day also sheds light on success stories of girls in many fields by publishing stories that contribute to spreading hope among girls and encouraging them to work and cherish themselves.

 Every year, the International Day of the Girl includes a different theme. In the first year the topic was about “eliminating child marriage,” the second year was about “innovation for girls’ education, ”and the third was about“ empowering teenage girls to end the cycle of violence ”and the year after was on “teenage girl power,” and for this year, International Girls ’Day will focus on their demands for[2]:

  • Living in an environment free from gender-based violence, harmful practices, HIV and AIDS
  • Acquiring  new skills towards the future of their choice
  • Leading a generation of activists to accelerate social change

Girls in Egypt face a number of problems that directly threaten their rights and freedom and reinforce the gender inequality gap, the most important of which are: issues of physical violence such as sexual harassment, and female genital mutilation, and the issue of child marriage. In this report, we shed light on the most important data and statistics regarding these issues in Egypt.

“Nada, a 14-year-old girl living in Assiut governorate, was forced by her father to undergo a female gential mutilation surgery in the clinic of a gynecologist, which resulted in her death after suffering from a nervous shock while undergoing the surgery[3]

This was one of the most important stories that recently occupied public opinion in Egypt, which shocked the Egyptian society and forced them to reconsider the extent of the spread of the phenomenon of female gential mutilation. According to a study conducted by the United Nations’ UNICEF, statistical data shows that Egypt is among the top five Arab countries in practice this habit. 87% of girls aged 15-49 have been subjected to FGM in Egypt, with 93% of cases happening in rural areas and 77% in urban settings. Statistics also indicate that this practice is spread in the governorates of Upper Egypt by a percentages that reaches 90%, and this percentage decreases in the governorates of Lower Egypt and the coastal governorates to reach 15%, indicating that Qalyubia governorate is the highest in the governorates of Lower Egypt by 68%, and in Cairo the percentage reaches to 35%[4].

UNICEF attributed this phenomena to the social and culture heritage in Egypt that link female genital mutilation to concepts like, purity and preparation for marriage, noting that there are differents in the rate of the phenomena over the years, the total prevalence of females that suffered from gential mutilation in Egypt in the year of  2000 reached 97%,  recording a decrease in 2015 to 92%, then it reached 87% in 2016. The prevalence of this practice increased to 91% in 2017, despite the policies that were adopted by the Egyptian government since 2008 of punitive legislation for both doctors and parents who perform female genital mutilation on their girls[5].

Despite the efforts made by the state to limit this phenomenon, there is still a need for more efforts and cooperation between the state and civil society institutions to curb and end this practice in the Egyptain society. For our part, The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights has launched campaigns to combat this phenomena in many Egyptian governorates. The campaigns aimed at raising awareness of girl’s rights and health, and the psychological and physical consequences of gential mutilation on girls. We are still working hard to raise awareness of girls’ rights and work to consolidate human rights principles.

In addition to the practice of female gential mutilation, we find that the phenomenon of sexual violence aganist girls has occupied public opinion in recent time, especially after reporting lots of cases by girls. According to the report of the Central Agency for Mobilization and Statistics, the “results of the survey of the economic cost of social violence against women in Egypt 2015”, it was found that 34% of women who had previously been married had been subjected to physical or sexual violence from their husbands, and it was also mentioned that about 7% of Egyptian women had been subjected to harassment in public transportations, in addition to about 10% Of them had been harassed in the street, during the 12 months preceding the survey[6].

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights issued a report on the issue of sexual harassment in Egypt, the statement included the  laws and policies that were issued recently to reduce sexual harassment in Egypt, in addation to a discussion on the recent sexual harassment cases in Egypt, the organization also launched a campaign that aimed at raising awareness of the issues of physical violence for women in Egypt.

One of the most important issues faced by girls in Egypt is the issue of child marriage. According to the official statistics of the Central Agency for Mobilization and Statistics, about 117,000 marriages under the age of 18 take place annually without any official papers, which constitute about 40% of the total number of marriages in Egypt. This practice causes many health and psychological problems in addition to losing all civil rights for the wife[7].

Child marriage is rooted in cultural heritage, as many families rush to marry their daughters because they look to marriage as a form of protection for them in society, without taking into account the negative side effects resulting from marriage at a young age. Usually, child marriage in Egypt takes place in two ways, the first in which there is no documentation, and the contract is done orally in front of the couple’s family, or by forging official documents for girls to prove that she has reached the legal age for marriage.

Child marriage reuslts in losing all civil rights that official marriage would grantee, as it negates the rights of the girl and her future children, because there are no official documents to document the marriage process. Thus if any divorce took place, there will be no rights for the wife nor the children. Also marriage at such a young age increases the rates of divorce due to insufficient awareness of the responsibilities and duties. Furthermore, child marriage results in severe psychological and health damage to girls at this age.

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights calls on all parties to take advantage of the opportunity of the world’s celebration of the International Day of the Girl to work to consolidate the principle of gender equality and raise awareness of the problems facing girls in Egypt, and to work to create an environment that respects human rights.


[1] United nation, International Day of the Girl Child, available at:  https://www.un.org/en/observances/girl-child-day

[2] United nation, International Day of the Girl Child, available at:  https://www.un.org/en/observances/girl-child-day

[3] “بعد وفاة طفلة في مصر متأثرة به.. ما هو الختان وما حجم الظاهرة”, سي ان ان عربية

https://arabic.cnn.com/middle-east/article/2020/01/31/egypt-child-death-genital-mutilation

[4]  ختان الإناث… ينتشر بنسبة 91% في مصر

 

https://elaph.com/Web/News/2020/02/1280460

[5]  https://elaph.com/Web/News/2020/02/1280460

[6] مسح التكلفة الإقتصادية للعنف القائم على النوع الإجتماعي مصر, صندوق الامم المتحدة للسكان, 2015. https://egypt.unfpa.org/sites/default/files/pub-pdf

[7] ألف حالة زواج اطفال في مصر: كيف حدث ذلك.  https://www.alarabiya.net/ar/arab-and-world/egypt/

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Press Release on the Presidential Pardon of 2081 inmates

October 7th, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptian Organization has received the news of the release of 2,081 inmates per the presidential decision No. 553 of 2020. The decision pardoned some of the inmates from the remainder of their sentence if they fulfilled the conditions of pardon, as well as the regulation of the Prison’s law concerning on the occasion of the celebration of the Armed Forces Day on 6th of October of 2020.
The Egyptian Public Prosecution has decided to release 68 children who were accused in Case No. 880 of 2020, against the backdrop of the recent September demonstrations, while advising their parents to take good care of them and to forbid them from committing such acts in the future. These measures are intended to protect children from harm that may occur during a protest in accordance with the laws on children’s rights.

In the same context, the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights calls for the release of those who were arrested against the backdrop of the same case referred above and were not found guilty of any violence or bloodshed crimes. The organization also stressed the need that all the accused be subjected to fair trials and laws that preserve their rights that are guaranteed by international laws and charters.

For his part, Dr. Abu Seada – head of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights – stressed the need to release those who were arrested in the previously mentioned demonstrations, and the need to limit resort to pretrial detention except for serious crimes. He also stressed the need to reduce the burdens of the citizens and provide the necessary frameworks that preserve their rights and freedoms.

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The Public Prosecutor ordered the release of the journalist, “Basma Mustafa”

October 6th, 2020 by Editor


The Public Prosecutor ordered the release of the journalist, “Basma Mustafa”, after being interrogated on the charges against her, and further investigations into the incident are currently resumed.

Basma Mustafa was accused of using her personal account on social media to publish and promote false news that would disturb security and public peace. The journalist on the Al-manasa- (platform’s) website denied all the charges against her and insisted that she only conduct journalistic investigations within the framework of her work on various social issues and issues of concern to public opinion, including issues related to the recent Coronavirus pandemic.

According to the statement, the “Public Prosecution” reviewed Basma’s account on the aforementioned social networking site, and found it inactive. Basma denied knowing the reasons behind the account deactivation. Investigations are being resumed.

It is reported that the journalist Basma Mustafa was arrested on her way to Luxor Governorate to cover the protests in the village of Awamiya.

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Campaign against sexual violence in Egypt

October 6th, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptain organization for human rights has issued its report regarding the increasing rate of sexual physical violence in Egypt.

Recently the Egyptain society has witnessed a number of human rights issues that occupied the Egypatin public opnion, and at the forefront of such issues is the sexual violence aganist women, whose rates have increased lately.

This report comes within the framework of An organized campaign led by the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights that aims at reduce violence in general and sexual violence in particular.

The report referred in the beginning to the multiple forms and types that violence can take, as well as the scientific methodology that the report relied upon in studying the phenomena.

The report included five main sections through which it shed light on the phenomenon of sexual violence in Egyptian society. The first section of the report deals with laws and legislations that criminalize sexual violence, through examining Egyptian legislation and laws that aim at criminalizing and reducing violence as well as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the declaration of elimination of all forms of violence against women, the United Nations and the statements of the Secretary-General of it and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.


The second section includes the role of civil society institutions in reducing the phenomenon of sexual violence, in which it referred to the role of civil society initiatives in reducing this phenomenon and its mechanism, and the extent of the real effectiveness of these institutions in dealing with the issues of sexual violence, the report also referered to the role of the National Council for Women, as well as the various activities and events that confront violence agnist women.


The third section discusses the role of the national institutions in fighting sexual violence, through discussing the role of the Public Prosecutor in confronting violence and in monitoring, tracking and achieving prompt justice, as well as his role in preserving the values of the Egyptian society. The report also referred to the role of the Egyptian police, which plays an effective role in fighting the phenomenon of sexual harassment and the various types of violence against women, especially that the police is considered the first source that the victim can seek assistance from. The report also refrered to the role that the central agency for public mobilization and statistics plays in highliting these incidents and bring it out to the public opnioin in the form of statistics that serve the decision-maker and civil society in focusing its efforts for a producing an effective roles in addressing domestic and sexual violence as well as violence in the public sphere.


The last section was concluded by shedding light on real cases of sexual violence in Egypt, as this issue occupied a wide space in the Egyptian public opinion. Despite all of the burdens related to economic and social problems and the wide efforts led by the state and the society together in fighting against the pandemic of COVID19, this did not distracted the society from denouncing these practices that violates the Egyptian human right, that the Egyptian society still believes in its depths in equality and cracking this faith From time to time, factors related to the outside are more related to the inside
The report concluded with a number of recommendations that aims at removing obstacles in the way to justice and also in order to be discussed with the competent authorities and other concerned parties, as follows:

  1. The necessary and appropriate protection should be provided to the survivors during and after the various stages of the investigation, and the survivors should be protected during and after the release of the report of the assault by filing a counter report by the perpetrator.
  2. Creation of specialized agencies to investigate crimes of sexual violence, so they can quickly investigate in this kind of crimes related to sexual violence.
  3. Review and amend personal status legislation to ensure that women and men have equal family rights, including marriage, divorce, child custody, and inheritance.
  4. Call on all political and religious leaders to publicly condemn violence against women, including all forms of sexual violence.
  5. Preparing an appropriate legal and legislative environment for women to achieve legal protection against sexual violence directed at women and girls and in accordance with human rights principles and sustainable development goals.

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The Egyptian Organisation for Human Rights’ Campaign against Bullying

October 4th, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptian Organisation for Human Rights launches its campaign against bullying, asking the public prosecutor to take all the possible and decisive measures to face the bullying crimes and to work to reduce the spread of that hateful phenomenon. which is threatening the values and principles on which society is based. as it’s considered to be an obstacle to the right to live a safe and dignified life free from any manifestations of violence and hatred.

As bullying is a form of abuse and victimization directed by an individual or group towards another individual or group that is weaker (often physically). Bullying is a repetitive act over time that involves an imbalance (may be real or perceived) in the balance of power with respect to the child with the greatest strength or with respect to a group attacking another group of lesser strength. Bullying usually takes different forms. It may be verbal, physical, or even gestures, and bullying can be through actual harassment, physical assault, or other methods of coercion.

The campaign has been launched in conjunction with the frequent and rapid perpetration of numerous bullying crimes, The organization monitored (15) cases of bullying in the recent period, the most recent of which was the exploitation of two children under five years old by a woman. She made them forcibly serving her, exploiting their weakness, with the intent to put them at the site of ridicule and bullying against them, endangering their health and their lives, and thus violating family principles and values in Egyptian society, violating the sanctity of their private life, and using a private account on a social networking site to commit these crimes.

The Public Prosecution statement stated that the Monitoring and Analysis Unit in the Statement Department at the Public Prosecutor’s Office had monitored the circulation of video clips of the two children during which the voice of a woman was heard ordering one of them to wash her feet, and to wash his face with the water that she puts her feet in, and order the other to smoke a cigarette, mocking them during filming, and presenting the matter to The Public Prosecutor ordered the investigation into the incident.

The Public Prosecutor recently referred approximately (18) cases of bullying for investigation, to prevent such crime that violates the right of human dignity.

The organization believes that bullying is contrary to all international conventions and treaties that call for refuting all forms of discrimination, combating violence and achieving justice and social peace in society, the most important of which is what was stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in its first article: “All people are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience, and they must treat each other in a spirit of brotherhood. ”This is in addition to what was stated in the provisions of the Egyptian constitution in Article 52 of it:“ Dignity is a right for every human being, and it is not permissible to violate it, and the state is obligated to respect and protect it. ”

In addition, the House of Representatives, headed by Dr. Ali Abdel-All – willing to confront the crimes of bullying – approved the draft law submitted by the government to amend some provisions of the penal code as a whole. The draft law was consistent with the provisions of the constitution, especially Articles (8, 53, 80, 81) from it, and it also comes in line with the international conventions that Egypt has acceded to regarding achieving equality, especially the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The first article of the draft law stipulated that: “The article included adding a new article to the Penal Code No. (309 bis“ b), which provided a definition of bullying as the offender demonstrated his power or control, or his exploitation of the victim’s weakness, or a situation that the perpetrator believes is offensive to the victim, such as sex. Or race, religion, physical descriptions, health status, mental status, or social level, with the intention of intimidating him, or putting him into a mockery, demeaning him or excluding him from his surroundings, and the purpose of the last intention is to confront the conditions of the victim’s marginalization or lack of promotion in their work.

The added article determines the punishment that is to be imposed if the crime of bullying is committed, while increasing it if one of the two circumstances is present. One of them is the occurrence of the crime by two or more persons, and the other is if the perpetrator is one of the assets of the victim, or one of those responsible for his upbringing or observation, or someone who has authority over him or was recognized by the law or according to a court ruling, or he was a servant of the perpetrator, with doubling the minimum penalty when meeting The two circumstances, and in the case of recidivism, the penalty is doubled in its minimum and maximum limits.

As for the second article, it stipulated that the law should be published in the official gazette, and it will be enforced from the day following the date of its publication.

Campaign Mechanisms:

  1. The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights will receive complaints of bullying crimes and analyze them to verify their facts.
  2. The organization will submit these complaints to the Public Prosecutor; In order to investigate them and take the necessary measures to adjudicate them.
  3. The organization will provide legal and psychological assistance to victims of bullying crimes, and provide the necessary support to work to overcome it.

For his part, Dr. Hafez Abu Saada – President of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights – stressed that bullying is a gross violation of a human right, and a legal and legislative environment must be prepared for the necessity of investigating bullying crimes and punishing the perpetrators of these crimes. This is to limit its spread as a pest that affects society as a whole.

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The statement of the Egyptain organization for human rights on the incident of Al Awamaya (Luxor)

October 1st, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights expresses its deep concern about the received information regarding the incident that took place in Alawamaya area in luxor governorate on the 1st of October 2020, the incident started following a security raid on the backdrop of the call for demonstrations in September. The incident took place as the security forces were arresting a young man from his home, and as a result fights broke out between the young man’s family and the officers in charge which resulted in a death of a man.
The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights calls on the Public Prosecutor to urgently start investigating into this incident as soon as possible and to take the suitable acts against those who are found guilty, In order for this incident to stand as an example to anyone who might think of violating the right to life of any Egyptian citizen. The organization also stress that this incident represents a serious violation to human rights in Egypt.
For his part, Hafez Abu seada, the head of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, stressed the need for announcing the results of the investigation to the public as soon as possible and the need for those who are found guilty to be brought to a fair trial in order to strengthen the rule of law and institutions and to ensure that the state’s policies are shifting towards more rights and freedoms.

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The Administrative Judiciary Court postpones the appeal of stopping the National Election authority’s decision to call voters to the House of Representatives elections.

September 30th, 2020 by Editor

The Administrative Judiciary Court headed by Counselor Sami Abdel Hamid, Vice President of the State Council, decided to postpone the hearing of the case No. 56183 to suspend the decision of the National Elections authority to invite voters to the elections of the House of Representatives 2021 for tomorrow’s session.
Former parliamentarian Muhammad Anwar Esmat Al-Sadat filed the case, demanding the suspension of the House of Representatives elections, then he amended his request in the case sheet to demand his eligiblity to run for the House of Representatives elections 2021, and obligating the National Elections authority to accept his candidacy papers.
The text of the lawsuit came, to cancel the decision to open the door for candidacy dated September 12, 2020, based on the fact that Article 106 of the Egyptian Constitution promulgated in 2014 and amended in 2019 stipulates that “the term of membership of the House of Representatives is 5 years starting from the date of its first meeting, and the elections for the new Council are held during the 60 Days prior to the end of its term ».
Thus the calls for elections should have started next November and not this September, which caused the decision to become unconstitutional and thus violating the law.
However, Counselor Lashin Ibrahim, head of the National Elections Authority and Vice President of the Court of Cassation, denied that a court ruling had been issued by the Administrative Court to postpone the next House of Representatives elections to next November.

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The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights The EOHR’s report on Demonstrations and Protests in Egypt Amidst a Desire for Stability and the Problem of External Interference

September 28th, 2020 by Editor

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The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights The EOHR’s report on Demonstrations and Protests in Egypt Amidst a Desire for Stability and the Problem of External Interference

September 28th, 2020 by Editor

Category: Reports | Comments Off on The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights The EOHR’s report on Demonstrations and Protests in Egypt Amidst a Desire for Stability and the Problem of External Interference | 1,175 views

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights The EOHR’s report on Demonstrations and Protests in Egypt Amidst a Desire for Stability and the Problem of External Interference

September 28th, 2020 by Editor

Category: Reports | Comments Off on The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights The EOHR’s report on Demonstrations and Protests in Egypt Amidst a Desire for Stability and the Problem of External Interference | 1,157 views

A symposium on the role of civil society in addressing the crisis of the Ethiopian dam

September 22nd, 2020 by Editor

In partnership between the Arab Organization for Human Rights and the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, an electronic symposium on “The Ethiopian Dam Crisis … and the Role of Civil Society” was held on Sunday noon, September 27, 2020.

With the aim of finding ways to deal with the escalating crisis, to search for exits, and to undertake civil society institutions with their moral responsibilities in promoting peace and development.

The symposium was chaired by Dr. Hafez Abu Saada -President of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights- in partnership with Professor. Alaa Shalaby -President of the Arab Organization for Human Rights- and a number of Arab and African individuals participated in the symposium.

The symposium resulted in reaching a number of recommendations, the most important of which are:

  1. Emphasizing the importance of the role of civil society in the three countries; To overcome the current faltering and rationalize the performance of governments; To de-escalate tension and support an agreement that responds to the rules of international law.
  2. Emphasizing the importance of the Egyptian civil society initiative to open a dialogue with civil society in both Ethiopia and Sudan. With the aim of reaching a joint initiative to promote peace, coexistence and good neighborliness.
  3. Emphasizing the importance of engaging Arab and African civil society; To support the efforts of civil society in the three countries.
  4. The issue is so of a great importance that it affects the fate of 270 million people in the three countries, and the responsibilities must be equal to this level of importance and danger.
  5. The importance of benefiting from similar global experiences, and lessons learned from these experiences; To avoid the negative experiences, such as the experience of the Turkish dams against the people of Syria and Iraq.
  6. The need for a joint Arab strategy to face water-related risks, especially in light of the Israeli seizure of Arab waters, the impact of Turkish dams, and the dangers of the Ethiopian dam.
  7. The move must be towards the protection of inalienable legal rights under international law, and that the legacy of legal obligations must be respected according to the Vienna Convention.
  8. Reaching an agreement means establishing a binding agreement on conflict issues that entails clear legal obligations.
  9. Going to the UN Security Council may be a necessity during the coming period, given that the dispute affects international peace and security and the right of peoples to life, safe living and development.
  10. Priority must be given to establishing a peaceful legal solution, and to exclude anything that would fuel hostility between peoples.
  11. Adhering to the principle of availability of information and transparency among the parties is an essential way to reach a sustainable treatment.
  12. The importance of realizing the risks related to geology and their effects on the structural integrity of the dam and the risks that could threaten the security of the population in eastern and northern Sudan and southern Egypt.
  13. Emphasizing the importance of partnership between the three countries in managing water resources; To meet the considerations and purposes of development of the peoples of the three countries.

The right to common development and the promotion of peace must be the primary purpose of the three nations, in what remains of a short period; To reach an appropriate settlement

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Civil Society and The Renaissance Crisis Seminar – September 2020

September 22nd, 2020 by Editor

In light of the increasing water challenges to the human right to economic development and a decent life, especially with the exacerbation of the Renaissance Dam crisis, the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, in cooperation with the Arab Organization for Human Rights, is going to hold a seminar titled “Civil Society and the Renaissance Dam Crisis,” at 12 PM Sunday 27 September 2020. The participations are a number of Arab, African and media experts via (Zoom application).

The major topics we will cover :

1- Raising the local and international public awareness of the crisis and its risks.

2- Formulating a vision based on international human rights law.

3- Enhancing civil society efforts in the three countries to support the handling of the crisis and the prevention of its risks.

4-  Reaching the various crisis tracks and suggesting practical measures for the parties concerned.

The seminar will be chaired by d. Hafez Abu Saada – President of the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights.

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For Participation, please contact the (WhatsApp) for the following numbers: (01280006780)-(01002226341).

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The Egyptian organization issues a report Entitled (Elections Under the Corona Pandemic)

September 21st, 2020 by Editor

Today, Monday, September 21, 2020, the Egyptian Organization for Human
Rights (EOHR) issued a report entitled “Elections Under the Corona Pandemic”
documenting the results from monitoring the senate elections. The
introduction of the report notes the importance of hosting ree and fair
elections, as it is an important pillar of the democratic process.
Civil society organizations, including the EOHR, attach importance to election
monitoring of all violations uring the electoral process. Organizations like EOHR
are not aligned with any political activity, political party, or electoral candidate.
Rather, the EOHR strictly monitors elections to ensure that they are free and
fair and ensures that both the ruling party and the opposition parties abide by
the constitution, the laws, and the international standard for human rights. As
such, the EOHR’s role in monitoring elections is not considered political work,
but is non-partisan legal work and is one of its core activities.
The EOHR’s report, “Elections Under the Corona Pandemic” documents the
election monitoring operation for the senate elections. The report is divided
into the following sections:
First: The legislative environment for the Senate elections.
Second: Provisions for voting by mail and ensuring the anonymity of voters
from Egyptians living abroad.
Third: Judicial oversight of the elections.
Forth: The division of the electoral stations and health guarantees under
corona.
Fifth: Analysis of voter demographics
Sixth: Organizing electoral monitoring locally and internationally
Seventh: Analysis of data on electoral stations
Eighth: The votes
The report ended with the following recommendations:
A fair analysis of the senate elections calls for examining several positive points
as well as points of weakness. The purpose of this analysis is not to point out
flaws, but rather to warn of repeated violations. Within this context, the
organization is calling for a set of recommendations, which came mainly as a
result of the organization’s involvement in monitoring work over the past
years.

  1. Promoting the idea of political participation among the various segments
    of citizens is essential. Seeing participation as one of the main pillars on
    which democracy is based, it is important to intensify political awareness
    programs for citizens by organizing seminars, discussion sessions, or
    allocating television programs with the same goal.
  2. It is crucial to introduce the procedures for casting a vote, as it was
    apparent that voters had a limited understanding of the voting process.
    There were two separate papers and two separate voting systems, and
    this led to several invalid votes.
  3. Benefiting from digital technology in the election of Egyptian abroad
    through
  • Registration
  • View candidates profiles and CVs especially in the Plurality voting
    system
  • Voting through the mail without reaching the diplomatic mission’s
    headquarters
  1. The Important role of mass media in raising awareness and motivating
    people to participate as it is a right and a national duty for everyone who
    meets the conditions for political participation.
  2. Senate elections is a vital constitutional entitlement as citizens should
    have a general awareness of its role and the importance of participation.
    Citizens must have wide knowledge of the functions and specialization of
    this council and its potential impact in Egypt

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The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights welcomes the appointment of an Egyptian ambassador as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Committee

September 20th, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights welcomes the appointment of Ambassador Wafaa Basim as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Committee. The Human Rights Committee is the entrusted body for the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (OHCHR). This committee is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the covenant and its different provisions in the signatory parties. Each of the signatory parties to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights must submit a quarterly report to the committee.

The appointment of Ambassador Wafaa Basim to the Human Rights Committee is a positive move. Her years of experience as an ambassador and her work as the permanent delegate at the United Nations and other international organizations in Geneva make her an expert in the human rights field. The appointment of a prominent figure such as Basim to the Human Rights committee will contribute to the promotion and improvement of human rights standards in Egypt. Egypt has been represented in the Human Rights Committee in the past. Ambassador Ahmed Fathallah was the former president of the Human Rights Committee, which documents Egypt’s consistent presence in international forums and its commitment to engaging in international institutions for human rights.

Within this light, the EOHR insists on the importance of coordination between the Egyptian state, its institutions, international organizations and civil society organizations with the purpose of fortifying the principles of human rights in society. This endeavor should take into account Egypt’s constitutional obligations as well as its international legal obligations.

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EOHR is following up on the investigations about the death of a citizen as a result of torture and calls for a national mechanism against torture.

September 16th, 2020 by Editor

The Public Prosecution of Southern Giza ordered the imprisonment of four police secretaries and the release of a police officer with 500 EGP bail pending investigations. The Public Prosecution said in a statement issued last Tuesday that it had received a notification from the police of a scuffle between two parties (four against two) with rocks, white weapons and other tools in Al-Madbah Street in Al-Munib District, Giza Governorate.
As a result, there were injuries in both groups and one of the quarrelers was killed. The deceased’s mother and sister accused the police officers who arrested him of killing him.
The Public Prosecution visited the scene of the incident to inspect it and question witnesses. It found five witnesses and kept the footage of the surveillance cameras installed in shops overlooking the side of the venue. The prosecution inspected the body of the deceased at Om Al-Masryeen hospital and found abrasions in separate places on his body.
The Public Prosecution assigned a medical examiner to conduct the autopsy to determine the cause of death, how it happened, and whether it can be conceived to have occurred as presented in the statements of witnesses and quarrelers in the investigations, which are being updated to be announced upon completion.
EHOR affirmed that torture is one of the most serious violations that a person can face, as it represents the humiliation of human dignity and the pain it causes for the victims, whether psychological or physical.
The international community has condemned torture as a crime against human dignity and the international law has categorically prohibited it regardless of the circumstances. It is one of the most heinous and cruel human rights violations, as it abuses the right to physical integrity. Torture leads to the degradation of human dignity and the death of the victim or their exposure to a permanent disability that prevents them from work normally.
The organization notes that many international conventions have emphasized the importance of this right, as it is the most supreme right of all. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights stated in the text of the third article that “everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person,” as well as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which stated in the sixth article that “every human being has the inherent right to life. This right shall be protected by law. No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his life”. The Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 17, 1979, stated that “Law enforcement officials may use force only when strictly necessary and to the extent required for the performance of their duty.” EOHR calls for amending Egypt’s Penal Code and Criminal Procedure Law to conform to the Convention against Torture that Egypt has signed and has become a domestic law, as well as reviewing the referral of the suspects in cases of torture
in accordance with Article 129 of the Penal Code on the use of cruelty, which has a non-deterrent penalty. For his part, Dr. Hafez Abu Saada – Head of the EOHR – affirmed that torture is one of the crimes that must be completely eliminated because it violates the most basic human rights, which is the right of life, liberty and personal safety, especially since the 2014 constitution stipulated in Article 55 (the criminalization of torture and ill-treatment). Abu Saada called on the government to amend legislations on the crime of torture, which includes the Penal Code and the Criminal Procedure Law, to conform to the new Egyptian constitution and the Convention against Torture, so that the punishment is commensurate with the crime committed. He also called for the signing of the Optional Protocol of the Convention against Torture in order to establish a national mechanism to combat tortur

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EOHR concludes its first training session

August 9th, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) concluded its first remote training session which took place over two days under the title Human Rights Principles and monitoring mechanisms of the electoral process. This comes within the context of EOHR’s keenness on monitoring and observing elections and building a new generation of human rights defenders from among its members in different governorates.

Dr. Hafez Abu Seada the president of EOHR gave the opening lecture in which he introduced EOHR and explained the creation and development of International Human Rights Law.

During his lecture Abu Seada said that EOHR was established in 1985 as a branch of the Arab Organization for Human Rights, and he explained the nature of EOHR’s work and underlined its achievements. Abu Seada stressed that EOHR is not affiliated with any opposition group and that its only concerned with the interests of all citizens from a human rights perspective.

The second speaker was Mr. Mohamed Osman EOHR’s former International Relations coordinator and one of its active members. Mr. Osman explained the historical evolution of modern human rights concepts and how it reached its current shape and form. Osman also explained the difference between declarations and treaties and how do they become domestic law.

The third speaker was Mr. Tarek Zaghloul the executive director of EOHR. Zaghloul reaffirmed the importance of the role of civil society organizations in monitoring the electoral process. He added that NGOs submit all the violations they documented to the election authority and further explained the role NGO observers and how they should go about their activities in accordance with laws and regulations.

The fourth Speaker was Mr. Mohamed Mahmoud, an active member of EOHR and its former head of the field work unit. Mr. Mahmoud discussed the law on the exercise of political rights and the establishment of the National Elections Authority and the nature of its relations with civil society.

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The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights A report on the death of Journalist Mohamed Mounir

July 26th, 2020 by Editor

Since the Covid-19 outbreak in Egypt, fears have risen regarding the spread of the virus in Egyptian prisons. After the Ministry of health announced the suspension of all events that entail large gatherings, the Ministry of Interior announced the suspension of prison visits due to the pandemic. In a meeting between the Director of the Prison Authority General Hisham Al Baradie and the National Council for Human Rights, the General displayed all the measures taken by the Prison Authority to sanitize prison cells, as well medical check-ups and Covid-19 tests for inmates. General Baradie stated before that not a single case of Covid-19 was reported in Egyptian prison and that the authorities have released since March 2020 over 13,000 prisoners. For this reason EOHR paid close attention to the developments of the case of Mohamed Mounir since the first day of his arrest, and EOHR urged the authorities to release him immediately. Once Mr. Mounir was released he announced through a video he recorded that he was infected with Covid-19 according to the diagnosis of his personal physician Dr. Alaa Awad, and he implored the president of the press syndicate, his friends and his brother journalist Hazem Mounir to help transfer his to hospital. Indeed Mr. Mounir’s pleas did not go unheard and he was taken to Um Al Masryeen hospital.

Mr. Mounir’s death by Covid-19 caused widespread controversy, as it was rumoured that he got infected in Prison which prompted EOHR to make all the necessary efforts to uncover the facts surrounding the case.

Who is Mohamed Mounir

  • Writer and journalist born in 1955. He began journalistic work in 1998 in Al-Ahaly newspaper.
  • He issued a book, he also wrote many articles, and received many awards and honours from various places
  • On July 2, the State Security Prosecution released the journalist, Mohamed Mounir, who was charged in case No. 535 after being arrested and held for fifteen days under preventive detention.

Hazem Mounir’s testimony regarding his Brother’s death

After a few hours of my brother’s arrest, a security convoy took him to the Supreme State Security Prosecution for interrogation, and issued a decision to put him in custody for 15 days pending case No. 535 of 2020.

From the headquarters of the State Security Prosecution in Nasr City, my late brother moved to a police station in the middle of Giza Governorate, where he spent his first night at a detention area specified for the elderly. Afterwards thanks to the efforts of the President of the Press Syndicate my brother was transferred to Al Haram Hospital to carry out the necessary medical examinations due to his health problems.

Mohamed Mounir has been held in the police station for the duration of his initial pre-trial detention, and throughout this period his daughters, his legal defence  team and myself we had  no complains regarding any harassment or prevention from daily visits (and sometimes two or three visits per day) or delivering his basic needs and requirements like Medicine, food, clothes, and all the sterilization tools. We were even allowed to provide my brother with fan due to the hot weather.

During this period, my brother was complaining about some health problems, caused by the place of detention, especially with the diseases that he was suffering from (and will be mentioned later) and it was a real problem for us and for fear of causing any harm to him, but we overcame these problems, thanks to the good treatment and good response of those in charge of the place of detention.

Before the first pre-trial detention period ended, my brother was summoned again to the investigation authorities, who decided to renew his imprisonment for an additional 15 days, and my brother went to Al-Haram Hospital, where a medical check-up was administered on him before he was transferred to the Tora Prison Hospital, where the second stage of the circumstances of my brother’s death, had begun on July 1st and ended with his release, the following day on July 2nd.

Immediately upon his arrival at Tora Prison Hospital, he underwent medical examinations, which took him an hour and a half, and my brother told me that the check-up was at the best level, and the doctor told him that he was “afraid” that he had a “stroke in the heart – which necessitates completing the exams – according to what he said. My brother remained in the hospital with another prisoner in one room, and never entered the prison itself.

The next day, immediately after his arrival at the hospital, I received a call informing me of the release of my brother, and I went to Tora Prison to take him and leave after finishing the necessary procedures that took nearly three hours or a little less.

Here we have a pause and state the following facts:

  1. First: Mohamed Mounir did not set foot in the prison, and he spent the night in Tora Hospital, and anyone who ever visited a prison inmate knows the spatial difference between the prison itself and the hospital building, although the two are in the same walled compound, there is no mixing whatsoever between the two buildings, and my brother only spent a night in the hospital.
  2. We stayed throughout the waiting period for the completion of the release procedures, inside the officers’ room, in the presence of all of them, talking and smoking and drinking tea and juice. If my brother had Covid-19 at the time, and the decision to release him was issued for this reason, how could the officers sit with us in the same room for about three hours while knowing the my brother had Covid-19.
  3. During a conversation between him and myself while we were waiting for the finalization of the procedures, my brother spoke of the good treatment he received from everyone in the Tora complex and at the hospital where he stayed. He even surprised the officers with his usual wit, when he appreciated the fava beans that he had this morning . I then escorted him and my family to his home, where he made some calls on the way to the Honourable colleague, the president of the press syndicate, the journalist Diaa Rashwan, to reassure him about the conditions, and to inform him of some medical problems that need urgent treatment, especially the stroke in the heart that the doctor of the Tora Hospital warned of. And Rashwan  pledged to take the required measures immediately.

According to the medical death certificate, the immediate cause of Mr. Mounir’s death was caused by:

  • Cardiac muscle stops.
    • A severe decrease in the blood oxygen level.
    • Infection with Covid-19

After examining these facts EOHR notes that Mr. Mohamed Mounir was held in the ward of detainees inside the Tora Prison Complex for only one day and spent the rest of the duration of his stay at the Tora Hospital.

EOHR also notes Mr. Mounir’s praise for his good treatment during a four-day detention at the police station as he spent them at an area specified for the elderly.

EOHR notes that Mr. Mounir’s defence attorney and his family we allowed to visit him and provide him with all his basic needs.

EOHR also noted that Mr. Mounir received medical check-ups and examinations at both Al Haram Hospital and the Tora hospital due to the medical problems he suffered from.

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EOHR issues a report on the threats foreign interventions pose on Human Rights in Libya

July 14th, 2020 by Editor

The Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) has watched carefully through its terrorism observatory the rapidly developing situation in Libya, especially that many of the terrorist attacks in Egypt came through the western border. Terrorist groups have established training camps on the Libyan city of Derna which has become a base from which attacks against Egypt were launched. EOHR has previously issued a thematic report in June 2019 titled Sinai under the guillotine of terrorism. The report monitored the establishment of terrorist camps through the cooperation of Muhammad Al Zawahiri and The Muslim Brotherhood.

The new report on Libya includes statistics issued by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on the ongoing back and forth movement between Libya and Syria by Syrian mercenaries loyal to the Turkish regime. The SOHR noted the transfer of a new batch of Syrian mercenary fighters to Libya while other went back to Syria.

Thus, the number of Syrian mercenaries who went to the Libyan territories increased to about 16,100 “mercenaries” of whom about 5250 returned to Syria, while Turkey continues to bring in more “mercenary” fighter to its camps to offer them training.

The report includes the position of the United Nations on The situation in Libya. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said “The conflict in Libya has entered a new stage, with foreign intervention reaching unprecedented levels, including in the delivery of sophisticated equipment and the number of mercenaries involved in the fighting.” The Secretary General also said that the military units of the Government of National Accord and through great foreign support pressed towards the east in its attack against the Libyan National Army, led by General Haftar. The Secretary General expressed his deep concern over the military buildup around the city of Sirte, as well as from the large level of direct foreign intervention.

In its report, the UN team in Libya called on the parties to the conflict in Libya and the countries that support it, to immediately stop the recruitment, financing and deployment of mercenaries and relevant actors to maintain the continuation of hostilities. He pointed out that the deployment of mercenaries in Libya only increases the number of armed groups and other actors operating in the context of impunity. The team referred to reports that Turkey has been involved in large-scale recruitment and transportation of Syrian fighters to take part in hostilities to support the national reconciliation government.

The report contained a set of recommendations including

  • Criminalization of terrorist financing
  • Working without delay to freeze any funds related to persons involved in business.
  • A ban on providing safe haven, means of support, or support for terrorists.
  • Refrain from providing any form of financial support to terrorist groups.
  • Sharing information with other governments regarding any groups that commit or plan to commit terrorist acts, implement effective measures to control borders.

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The criminal court releases the film producer Moataz Abdel Wahab

October 6th, 2020 by Editor



The criminal court decided to release the film producer, Moataz Billah Abdel Wahab, while the prosecution did not appeal the release decision.

Abdel-Wahab was arrested on May 5, he was accused of  participating in a terrorist group with and promoting its purposes, publishing and broadcasting false news and data, and misusing social media, The prosecution decided to imprison him on the pending Case No. 568 of 2020 State Security .

Abdel-Wahab is a cinematic producer of a number of films. The Syndicate of Filmmakers demanded his release stating that he has “a good biography and bright artistic history,”



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