Written by: Committee for Justice (CFJ)
Geneva: September 20, 2023
On Tuesday, October 3, 2023, the Committee for Justice is organizing a side event during the 54th regular session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, focusing on human rights in Egypt and the mirage of reform.
– A Tragic Situation in Egypt:
CFJ stated that the situation in Egypt has become tragic. Oppression is increasing and spreading throughout the country. The authorities target almost anyone who dares to criticize deteriorating living conditions or expose human rights violations. This includes politicians, human rights defenders, journalists, and even ordinary citizens.
Despite President Sisi and the Egyptian authorities’ claims that human rights are improving, indicators suggest that the situation is deteriorating, encompassing economic, social, and cultural rights.
– The National Dialogue is not Inclusive:
The Committee for Justice pointed out that the national dialogue on human rights, initiated by President Sisi, lacks the inclusivity claimed by the authorities. The minimum conditions to give some credibility to the dialogue, such as halting enforced disappearances, torture, arresting individuals for exercising their rights, or releasing thousands of currently detained political prisoners, were not met. Moreover, the government excluded many of these issues from the dialogue discussions, starting the dialogue without the participation of Islamic groups and other main parties.
CFJ noted that this was accompanied by a wave of arrests targeting members of democratic opposition groups, as well as journalists and human rights activists. Recently, the Free Current Coalition faced retaliation with the arrest of its secretary-general, Hisham Kassem. Furthermore, individuals criticizing Egypt’s human rights record from abroad find their relatives increasingly subjected to retaliatory actions and arbitrary arrests.
– Need to Establish a Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism:
The Committee for Justice emphasized that the Egyptian regime has shown no political will to respect basic human rights and foster civil space in the country.
CFJ urged the Human Rights Council and its member states to end their silence on this issue and establish a mechanism to monitor and report on the situation in Egypt.
Speakers at the event include the German-Egyptian activist, Fagr Al-Adly (online), the wife of the detained Egyptian human rights activist Mohamed Adel, Mrs. Rofaida Hamdi (online), the Egyptian human rights activist, Ibrahim Ezz El-Din, and the researcher at the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, Jeremie Smith. The event will be moderated by the UN Communications Officer of the Committee for Justice, Sara Sakouti.
The event will take place in Room XXV, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, at 11am CET. You can follow the live broadcast via this link.