Egypt rights group to launch counter report
Tuesday, December 1,2009 19:27
By Mohamed Abdel Salam

CAIRO: A coalition of 16 Egyptian human rights organizations announced that they plan to send a collective report on the current human rights conditions in Egypt to the United Nations ahead of their scheduled review of the National Human Rights Council’s report in February. The news comes as rights groups continue to argue that the council’s report failed to give proper and detailed realities facing Egypt in terms of human rights.

The prepared report will detail the annual reports from the individual organizations within the overall context of human rights in the country, a statement from the coalition said.

The report to be presented at a press conference entitled “Human Rights in Egypt … police state … Why?” next Wednesday at the Hisham Mubarak Law Center and is expected to present collective testimonials on the human rights situation in Egypt currently. While the report is focusing on the past four years, it employs a historical look at the history of human rights in the country for the past quarter of a century.

It will look at the legal restraints established by the government to inhibit rights groups from conducting their work.

According to the coalition, the counter report will focus on the government’s violations, which “demonstrate the nature of the problems and the major obstacles that prevent Egyptians of the enjoyment of their rights, which were established under the basic international conventions of Human Rights and ratified by the Egyptian government.”

Surprisingly, the national council’s report was the most critical report published by the psuedo-governmental organization. In that report, which the UN will review in February, the council argued that Egypt had taken a “step backward” on the path toward greater rights and freedoms in the country.

The report will be presented by prominent human rights Ahmed Seif al-Islam, Director of the Hisham Mubarak Law Center, and the conference will be run by Bahi Eddin Hassan of the Cairo Center for Human Rights Studies.

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