web analytics
July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
News & Views
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Morsi’s Egypt Poised to Criminalize Protest

banners or chants "that include insults, defamation or contempt of 'heavenly' religions, or that stir sedition, violence or hatred or include an offence to state bodies and institutions" will be prohibited
Morsi-Mubarak

Morsi-Mubarak
Photo Credit: Yoram Yanover

On Wednesday, February 13, the Egyptian Islamist-dominated cabinet approved a new draft law regulating public protests.

Egypt’s Justice Minister, Ahmed Mekki, said the proposed law was drawn up in order “to ensure the peaceful nature of demonstrations.”

The proposed regulations deal with several critical aspects of public protests.  The demonstration approval process, the use of physical objects, the location and the topics which can be discussed, all will be severely restricted if the new proposal becomes law.

The proposed restrictions include a prohibition on raised platforms for speakers and the use of tents, both of which were famously used during the revolution two years ago and again this past year during the demonstrations against Egyptian President Morsi’s Constitution.

Under the new legislation, protesters will not be permitted to wear masks or other objects to cover their faces, and banners or chants “that include insults, defamation or contempt of ‘heavenly’ religions, or that stir sedition, violence or hatred or include an offence to state bodies and institutions” will be prohibited.

And there will now be only one site within each district at which protests can be held, and that site will be designated by the governor of each district.  Blocking roads and squares will not be permitted anywhere, and permit applications will have to be submitted at least three days in advance of the protest.  In addition, no protests will be permitted within 200 meters of any government buildings or places of worship.

The proposed law now goes to the Shura Council, which is the upper body of the Egyptian legislature.  The Shura Council is the only body with the power to pass legislation during the current transition period.

The official reason for the proposed changes is to ensure the right of “peaceful assembly,” while preventing mass violence and mayhem, but human rights groups are critical.

In the two years since the start of the Egyptian revolution, there have been many demonstrations, quite a few have been violent and there has been a good deal of damage and delay caused by the demonstrations.  More than 60 people died during violent protests between January 25 and February 4, alone. Prior to the revolution, there were no public protests, because they were not permitted.

But for researchers at the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, a different calculation must be drawn.  A  CIHRS statement pointed out about the draft law:

It is worth noting that all of these prohibitions were routinely used by the government under Mubarak as a means to repress freedom of expression.  This same article would also make it illegal to insult to a governmental body and its constituent organizations, which would mean the prohibition of any demonstration accusing a public institution of failure or corruption, or which demands its reform, a change in its leadership, or that it be held to account for any crimes or violations.   Anyone who does so would face a jail sentence and a fine of between twenty and fifty thousand Egyptian Pounds.

The Egyptian director of Human Rights Watch, Heba Morayef, also noted the backwards direction in which Egypt seems headed: “This law seems designed to actually increase restrictions, whereas the existing legal framework, which dates back to the early 20th century, was bad enough.”

About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

Please use the Facebook Tab below to leave your comment:

2 Responses to “Morsi’s Egypt Poised to Criminalize Protest”

  1. Rabbi Rosenberg and his 'interfaith' efforts for peace — Winds…

    sheikyermami.com/2013/02/10/rabbi-rosenberg-and-his-interfaith-efforts-for-…

    4 days ago… Organizers to vote on restoring 'Hatikva' to interfaith program… be omitted during the area's interfaith Holocaust commemoration, because,… of his position, Rosenberg is now calling for a boycott of the event he helped found,…

  2. Yechiel Baum says:

    from Paroh to Morsi – what changed?

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Current Top Story
rocket in a field near Kibbutz Mefalsim
Heaven on Earth (With Rockets)
Latest News Stories

Gaza’s Hamas rulers are battling the IDF — and now facing internal dissension as well, as families start protesting their ruined lives.

rocket in a field near Kibbutz Mefalsim

Half the population gone at any one time, but residents of Gaza Belt remain strong.

Protecting a young baby from rocket fire when the Code Red rocket alert siren sounds

IDF soldiers are fighting in Gaza; Israelis are holding firm as massive rocket fire continues at home.

UNRWA has found a third set of rockets in a one of their schools. We’re sure they’re shocked.

A radar system might stop mortar attacks, but that doesn’t change the truism that “the best defense is a good offense.”

“He had a hopped-up ‘cycle that took off like a gun/That fool was the terror of Highway 101 – ‘ from the song “Black Denim Trousers.”

The Givati Brigade has foiled another attempted infiltration via a tunnel into Israel, killing five terrorists who might have murdered hundreds of Israelis.

PLO officials say ‘all’ terror factions agree to a 72 cease fire, but rocket fire continues as usual.

The lights are out again in Gaza, but it’s not clear who is responsible this time around. Does it matter?

There’s a battle going on for Jerusalem’s soul, and Cinema City proves you don’t need to compromise on Shabbat or Kashrut to be a success.

Global anti-Semitism is doing the ‘Gaza Strip’ and unveiling itself, no longer needing an excuse to hide.

While Israelis couldn’t sleep in Rishon Lezion, IDF pilots were busy making sure Gaza terrorists were awake Monday night as well.

Without fanfare, supermarket magnate Rami Levy has been quietly unloading truckloads of food and basics at the homes of all the fallen soldiers…

After killing 5 IDF soldiers, Hamas terrorists tried to steal the soldier’s bodies.

Kerry’s performance panned by Israeli public, media, and even the PA. Why fury directed only at the Israeli government?

More Articles from Lori Lowenthal Marcus
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, dining at the Prime Minister's residence, Jan. 4, 2014.

Kerry’s performance panned by Israeli public, media, and even the PA. Why fury directed only at the Israeli government?

Israeli soldier reciting the Shema prayer near the border in Southern Israel on July 20, 2014.

Calling for a global recitation of the Shema at 12:00 noon EST, 7:00 a.m. PST, 7:00 p.m. in Israel.

The UN Security Council wants a cease fire now. The focus is on the safety of Gaza civilians, but not Israel’s security.

Bibi’s cabinet unanimously rejected Kerry’s ceasefire proposal, but still considering 12-hour break.

Hip Hop musicians create a song and video to express how they feel about the current Arab/Israel war.

Senators wrote to Obama insisting any ceasefire ensures Israel will be free from Gazan terrorism.

Sen Ted Cruz wants the administration to give straight answers to questions about the FAA ban on Israel.

Why is the ban on Israel’s airport different from all other FAA bans?

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/morsis-egypt-poised-to-criminalize-many-forms-of-protest/2013/02/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: