Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood Demands Justice Minister to Quit
Wednesday, April 26,2006 00:00
By Aki

More than 100 Egyptian MPs, including members of the Muslim Brotherhood, have demanded an extraordinary session of parliament to discuss a motion of no-confidence in the justice minister, Mahmoud Abul Leil. "We think the minister is abusing his position to carry out a campaign that seeks to place the magistrature under the control of the executive, of whom Aulb Leil is a member" Brotherhood parliamentary spokesman, Hamdi Hassan told the independent daily Al-Masri al-Yom.
The request arrives the day after the violent beating of a magistrates, Mahmoud Hamza, and 15 activists of the Youth for Change movement, who were trying to protest in front of the judges’ union office in the centre of Cairo. The daily said Hamza is being treated in hospital after having been manhandled by the police, though he is in a stable condition.

The judges’ union office in the capital has in recent weeks become the symbol of protests against the rule of president Hosni Mubarak and of demands for a reform of the justice system and for greater autonomy for magistrates.

For days now, magistrates and activists of the Kifaya (Enough) movement have been protesting against the decision by the justice minister to start disciplinary proceedings against two Supreme Court judges. The judges, Hicham Al-Bastawissi and Mahmoud Mekki, had denounced the involvement of some of their colleagues in alleged electoral fraud at the last elections.