This website is an archive of the work of Marietje Schaake in the European Parliament between 2009 and 2019. Marietje can be reached at

Where is the EU five years after the revolution in Egypt?

Five years ago mass protests took over Tahrir square in Cairo. After initial hesitation the EU sought a new approach to Egypt, and wanted to support the transition from autocracy to democracy. It would fully support "the wish of the people in our neighbourhood to enjoy the same freedoms that we take as our right." MEP Marietje Schaake (D66/ALDE) has followed up the situation in Egypt and says: “Unfortunately real change never materialized, and the EU has become a passive spectator again in Egypt, as opposed to an active promotor of democracy and human rights. President Sisi's autocratic and repressive policies are too often met with silence from the EU, even when they are creating a dangerous situation that can have serious consequences in North Africa and the Middle East. The illusion of stability will eventually backfire.” In the run-up to the anniversary of the start of the revolution, the Egyptian regime has stepped up the detentions of activists linked to protests and journalists that are critical of the government´s record. Leaders of the April 6 movement such as Ahmed Maher remain unjustly imprisoned, international NGO's can not do their work, civil society and the media are under pressure. On top of that economic problems for tens of millions of Egyptians remain. Schaake: “Egypt is facing a profound human rights crisis. Five years ago, the EU wanted to support activists and society as much as possible. Now it is looking the other way when the same people are being put in jail. The EU must recognize that interests such as counter terrorism cooperation will only be fruitful in the long term when the young generation of Egyptians can live in a pluralistic, free, just and more prosperous society.” See also on Egypt: 17-12-2015 Plenary speech on Ibrahim Halawa potentially facing the death penalty in Egypt 04-11-2015 Open Letter on Egypt to the UK Prime Minister 22-06-2015 EU must condemn the death penalty, always and everywhere 18-02-2015 Parliamentary Questions on the case of Ahmed Douma and other political prisoners in Egypt 04-02-2015 MEP: Life sentences for 230 secular activists Egypt unacceptable 30-01-2015Letter to High Representative Mogherini on the cases of Ahmed Maher, Mohamed Adel and Ahmed Douma in Egypt 27-01-2015 MEPs call for the release of the protesters in Egypt and initiation of the investigation of Shaimaa El-Sabag death 15-01-2015 MEP: Egyptian government must respect human rights (Resolution) 03-12-2014 MEP: mass trials and 185 death sentences new low point in Egypt 01-09-2014 Written Question to the High Representative on the case of Mohamed Tareq in Egypt 17-07-2014 Response Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66) to adoption resolution on freedom of expression in Egypt 01-07-2014 Written question regarding Azouli military prison in Egypt 23-06-2014 MEP: EU must combat conviction journalists Egypt Egyptian_Flag