Press release: Egypt’s army is reckoning with revolutionaries

Marietje

Today the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram reported that twelve prominent revolutionary figures, including presidential candidates, activists, journalists, MPs and writers, have been referred to a military prosecution for allegedly inciting hatred against the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) and attempting to bring down the state.

ALDE Press release, 07.03.2012

It concerns well-know revolutionaries like presidential hopeful Bothaina Kamel, writer Alaa Al-Aswany and founder of the We Are All Khaled Saeed Facebook page Wael Ghoneim, Kefaya founder George Ishak, and TV presenter Yosri Fouda. April 6 Youth Movement activist Asmaa Mahfouz, who was recently sentenced in absentia to one year in prison and fined LE2000 for assaulting a man – who she says she does not know – is  among the accused. The accused were referred to a military court, as the allegations involved the SCAF, according to a military source.

Guy Verhofstadt (ALDE group leader) stated: “This looks like a reckoning of the Supreme Council of Armed Forces with the main leaders of the Egyptian revolution a few months before it will transfer power to an elected president. It is absurd that those people who succeeded in bringing down a dictator are now accused of to bring down the State. Therefore, I ask HR/VP Cathy Ashton to summon the Egyptian ambassador to explain what is the purpose of all this." Marietje Schaake (D66, Netherlands), member of Parliament's foreign affairs committee added: “Military trials for civilians are a grave injustice and never amount to a fair trial. For Egypt to live up to its people´s promise, society should be based on the rule of law and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. After targeting Egyptian and international NGO’s, SCAF now sends a chilling message to those who struggle for a better Egypt for all Egyptians. These are tools from Mubarak´s toolbox, we believe they belong in the past." Edward McMillan-Scott (Lib,Dem,UK), Vice President of the European Parliament for Democracy and Human Rights said: "Today an Egyptian human rights organisation told the UN in New York that Egypt is living through the worst crackdown of human rights and civil society for 25 years. It shows once more that with the military in power Egypt is actually worse than before. We should rethink the funds the EU promised Egypt after the revolution."