EOHR welcomes the President’s pardon of 332 young prisoners including activists

May 16th, 2018 by Editor

EOHR welcomes the President’s pardon of 332 young prisoners including activists

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi issued a presidential pardon that ordered the release of 332 young prisoners including dissident political activists like Dostour party members Andrew Saleeb and Islam Fouad Qassem. This comes after multiple pleas and demands voiced the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights (EOHR) to secure the release of all political activists who were detained due to their legitimate exercise of their constitutional rights.

EOHR welcomes this decision and views it as a step in the right direction as it complies with article 21 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1966, which states that “the right to peaceful assembly is recognized, Restrictions imposed on the exercise of this right shall be imposed by law and shall constitute necessary measures in a democratic society for the maintenance of national security, public safety, public order, the protection of public health or morals or the protection of the rights and freedoms of others. ” and Article 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which stipulates that “Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and assembly“.

EOHR stresses that freedom of peaceful assembly is one of the core foundations of a democratic state that upholds human rights, and therefor the current protest law does not belong to this day and age as it only stifles this core freedom. The right to hold protests and demonstrations is one of the rights attained by Egyptians in the massive popular uprisings of January 2011 and June 2013 and attempting to restrict this right goes against the will of the people. EOHR calls upon Egypt’s parliament and government to either amend or replace the 2014 protest law which isn’t compatible with the Egyptian constitution and International Human Rights Law.

Finally EOHR calls upon the government to release all detained peaceful protesters immediately and respect basic rights and freedoms including freedom of peaceful assembly.

Dr. Hafez Abu Seada the president of EOHR welcomed the release of the 332 prisoners, stressing that the protest law contradicts international human rights obligations and is inconsistent with the essence of the Egyptian Constitution, which guarantees the right to demonstrate. Abu Seada added that there contradictions necessitate the law’s amendment.



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