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Published On: Mon, Nov 25th, 2013

Egypt: President Adly Mansour adds ban on protests, more strict than under President Mubarak

Egypt interim president is making headlines over the new law designed to crackdown on violent protests, but activists say it may be protecting violence practices by police and quelling opposing voices.

Muslim Brotherhood Logo

Muslim Brotherhood Logo

The Sunday news presented a new law banning public gatherings of more than 10 people without approval from the government, threatening violators with fines and even prison time.

“The law is giving a cover to justify repression by all means,” said Bahy Eddin Hassan, head of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, one of the local groups that had campaigned against the law.

An amendment to the law removed the ban on sit-ins, but still allows unrestricted use of birdshot by police against protesters. Activists say the law is more restrictive than the guidelines under President Mubarak.

Penalties in the law range from seven years in prison for using violence in a protest. It calls for one year in prison for covering the face in a country where many women wear full-face veils. It calls for a similar prison sentence for protesting in or around a place of worship.

The law sets fines of $44,000 for being violent at a protest. It sets fines of $1,500 for protesting without a permit, – the average monthly salary in Egyptian is $175.

“The law is labelled one that regulates protests rights, but in essence it is regulates the repression of the right to protest,” Hassan said.

Hassan said government officials and supportive media outlets promoted the law as means to halt protests by supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, who was removed by the military in July. Morsi’s supporters hold near-daily protests that often turn violent, though the size of the demonstrations have dropped due to an intense security crackdown targeting Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood.

Shaima Awad, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, said protests would continue, calling the new law “nonsense.”

“How can I notify them three days before the protests and give the names of organizers? It would be like handing myself in,” Award said. The law “unifies revolutionaries afresh. … We can now all agree that the military authorities are trying to strangle any voice that says no. We won’t accept and others won’t accept that either.”

 

Egypt protests have led to destruction of several Coptic Churches all over the country Image/Video Screen Shot

Egypt protests have led to destruction of several Coptic Churches all over the country
Image/Video Screen Shot

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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