Egypt court suspends constitutional panel

An Egyptian court on Tuesday suspended a 100-member panel selected by MPs from the Islamist-dominated parliament and tasked with drafting the country's new constitution.

An Egyptian court on Tuesday suspended a 100-member panel selected by MPs from the Islamist-dominated parliament and tasked with drafting the country's new constitution.

Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood's presidential candidate, Khairat al-Shater Photo: EPA

The ruling was a blow to the Islamists, who have catapulted into the centre of Egypt's political stage since the ouster 14 months ago of longtime authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak.

It followed complaints by political groups, secular politicians and constitutional experts over parliament's decision to give MPs half the seats on the panel.

    

Thanks to the Egyptian Adminstrative Court 

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Egypt court suspends constitutional assembly

Egyptian protesters chant carry banners saying: "A constitution for all Egyptians must be written by the rebels, civilian constitution is our basic right." (28 March 2012) 

The constitution will determine the influence of Sharia on Egyptian law and minority rights 

A court in Egypt has suspended the 100-member assembly appointed last month to draft the country's new constitution.

Several lawsuits had demanded Cairo's Administrative Court block the decision to form the panel as it did not reflect the diversity of Egyptian society.

They said women, young people and minorities were under-represented.

 The Guardian home

Egypt told to give military leaders 'safe exit' by western governments

Pressure applied to grant immunity, Muslim Brotherhood claims, but party insists generals will face trial over alleged killings

Muslim Brotherhood 'Freedom and Justice Party' flag

Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood Freedom and Justice Party supporters protesting. Photograph: Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters

Western governments have been encouraging Egypt's nascent political powers to consider offering the military generals currently running the country immunity against prosecution, according to the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf) has been in control of the country since the toppling of former president Hosni Mubarak in February 2011, with the junta's rule marked by continued violent confrontations between revolutionaries and security forces, including allegations that they have ordered the shooting of unarmed protesters.

 

Liberals, Islamists tussle over Egypt constitution

By Shaimaa Fayed

CAIRO | Tue Mar 27, 2012 2:35pm BST

CAIRO (Reuters) - Egyptian liberals and leftists wary of Islamist dominance of an assembly drafting a new constitution said on Tuesday they would write their own, deepening a row overshadowing a major element of the transition from President Hosni Mubarak's rule.

Liberals who have quit the 100-member assembly in protest at its make-up were among those who signed a statement that pledged to write an alternative constitution to the one being drafted by the official body, which was formed at the weekend.

"We shall undertake this duty from outside the official assembly in collaboration with all the segments of society and experts that should have been included from the beginning," said the statement, released at a news conference where one speaker after another accused the Islamists of seeking to dominate.

 

Egyptian parliament selects constitution panel

CAIRO (AP) — Egypt's Islamists looked poised Saturday to dominate a key lever of power that will help determine the country's political future as parliament selected a panel to draw up the country's new constitution. Liberal lawmakers denounced the process as a "farce" and walked out in protest.

The constitution, which will be written by the 100-member committee, will determine the balance of power between Egypt's previously all-powerful president and parliament, and define the country's future identity, including the role of religion and minority rights. With so much at stake, the question of who should sit on the panel has sparked fierce debate in Egypt.

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Egypt Coptic Pope Shenouda is buried at monastery

The BBC's Jon Leyne in Cairo says there were "almost hysterical scenes" at the funeral

The funeral of Coptic Pope Shenouda III has taken place in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.

Gloomy economic forecast puts Egypt in the doldrums

Gloomy economic forecast puts Egypt in the doldrums

 

Young Egyptian students stand in front of their home after returning from school in the poor area of al-Zabbalin in Cairo (AFP Photo / Khaled Desouki)

More than a year after the revolution in Egypt, high hopes of a better life for everyone have faded with its faltering economy. Expectations for the civilian rulers who will take over in June are high, but the cost of failure may be higher.

­The declared transition to democracy is a messy process in Egypt.

Despite the public’s great expectations, living conditions for the average Egyptians remain poor in the wake of the revolution.

Christians gather to bid farewell to Egypt's Pope

Egyptian Christians gather to mourn the death of Pope Shenouda III, the head of Egypt's Coptic Orthodox Church, outside the Abassiya Cathedra in Cairo March 18, 2012. REUTERS-Mohamed Abd El Ghany

CAIRO (Reuters) - Christians gathered on Sunday to pay final respects to Pope Shenouda III, who sought to soothe sectarian tension in his four decades atop Egypt's Orthodox Church but saw increasing flareups in the majority Muslim nation in the last months of his life.

Friction has worsened since President Hosni Mubarak, who suppressed Islamists, was ousted last year. Since then Shenouda, who died on Saturday aged 88, often called for harmony and regularly met Muslim and other leaders.

 

Halt ships of shame from the USA carrying weapons to Egypt

The Dutch-flagged ship is reportedly due to arrive in Egypt early next week.

The Dutch-flagged ship is reportedly due to arrive in Egypt early next week.

© Wim van der Moolen

A ship carrying a cargo of weapons with explosives en route from the USA to Egypt must not be allowed to offload because of a substantial risk the weapons will be used by Egyptian security forces to commit human rights violations, Amnesty International said on Thursday.

The organization has tracked the Dutch-flagged ship, MV Schippersgracht, for the past two months. It is currently in the Mediterranean Sea and due to arrive in Egypt early next week.

 

Egypt acquits 'virginity test' military doctor

An Egyptian military tribunal on Sunday acquitted an army doctor of a charge of public obscenity filed by a protester who claimed she was forced to undergo a virginity test while in detention.

Army doctor Ahmed Adel, who was accused of carrying out a forced virginity test on a female detainee, speaks to the media after being acquitted in Cairo. A military court acquitted Adel on Sunday charged with carrying out a forced virginity test on Samira Ibrahim during protests last year, said a court source, in a case that has fuelled anger against the ruling generals.

Army doctor Ahmed Adel speaks to the media after being acquitted in Cairo Photo: REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El-Ghany

The court denied the humiliating tests even took place, despite a ruling by another court and admissions by generals quoted by a leading rights group.

The ruling further infuriated the country's revolutionary youth movements, who have said claims of the virginity tests were the first sign that the generals who took over from deposed President Hosni Mubarak 13 months ago were carrying on his repressive practices.

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Egypt unrest: Court clears 'virginity test' doctor

Samira Ibrahim 

The legal action brought by Samira Ibrahim has put a stop to virginity tests on female protesters 

A military court in Egypt has acquitted an army doctor accused of carrying out forced "virginity tests" on women protesters, state media reports.

Ahmed Adel was cleared because the judge found contradictions in witness statements, the state news agency said.

 
This is from Ikhwan Web, in English only, why not in Arabic???
Freedom and Justice Party Supports Role of NGOs as Essential to Democratic Process
The Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) today re-iterated its support for the role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in supporting the democratic process, especially in nascent democracies. Under the previous, autocratic, regime, Egypt suffered many violations of civic and democratic rights

(20 February 2012- Cairo) The Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) today re-iterated its support for the role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in supporting the democratic process, especially in nascent democracies. Under the previous, autocratic, regime, Egypt suffered many violations of civic and democratic rights. NGOs played an important role during that time in exposing the many atrocities of the regime.

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Egypt's police still in crisis after revolution

Line of riot police with shields, helmets and truncheons Egypt's central security forces continue to use tough tactics against protesters

It was no coincidence that Egypt's uprising began on Police Day last year; protesters' original demands included the resignation of the hated former interior minister, Habib al-Adly, and an end to the abuses committed by his security forces.

Egypt's rulers face backlash after lifting travel ban on Americans

Egypt had portrayed its case against American NGOs as necessary to thwart foreign agents intent on harming the country. Now angry Egyptians say their rulers have caved to US pressure.

By Kristen Chick, Correspondent / March 1, 2012

In this Feb. 26 file photo, Egyptian protesters chant anti-military ruling slogans during a trial of employees of pro-democracy groups charged with using foreign funds to foment unrest in Cairo, Egypt. Egypt has lifted a travel ban on Feb. 29 for seven Americans charged with fomenting unrest by working for illegally funded pro-democracy groups, signaling an end to the worst crisis in Egypt-U.S. relations in 30 years.

Khalil Hamra/AP/File

 

Coming to Kirkcaldy was a gift from God...

KIRKCALDY;St Marks Coptic Orthodox Church, 264 Links Street; The 20th anniversary of the consecration of the church; Father MARK AZIZphoto; WALTER NEILSON

KIRKCALDY; St Marks Coptic Orthodox Church, 264 Links Street; The 20th anniversary of the consecration of the church; Father MARK AZIZ photo; WALTER NEILSON

 

THE congregation of a Kirkcaldy church will be celebrating this weekend as the church reaches an important historical milestone.

 

The 20th anniversary of the consecration of St Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Church in Links Street will be marked with a Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning followed by a celebratory reception.

Top U.S. general discusses NGO case in Cairo

By Marwa Awad | Reuters – 1 hour 19 minutes ago

U.S. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, left, shakes hands with Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, head of Egypt's ruling military council, during a meeting at the Ministry of Defense in Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012. The Pentagon's top general is in Egypt for security talks amid tensions over Cairo's move to bring criminal charges against 19 American pro-democracy workers. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, met with counterpart Lt. Gen. Sami Anan and top Egyptian military leader, Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi. Photo: Khalil Hamra / AP POOL

CAIRO (Reuters) - The top U.S. military officer met Egypt's ruling generals in Cairo Saturday and discussed the case of U.S. pro-democracy activists charged in an investigation that has strained ties between Cairo and Washington.

General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was the first senior U.S. official to visit Cairo since the charges were brought against 43 foreign and Egyptian activists following a probe into civil society groups.

 

Egypt charges 44 NGO workers with illegal activities,

"breach of the law cited – illegal foreign funding – is not used against suspected support for religious groups from wealthy Gulf countries" 

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gives a joint press conference in Sofia  

Egypt's post-revolutionary authorities have set it on a collision course with Washington, its erstwhile ally, by deciding to charge 44 NGO workers including 19 Americans with illegal activities.

The security situation in Egypt was high on the agenda of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the scheduled talks in Sofia with Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov Photo: AFP/GETTY

 

The flag of Islam flies above the White House: How NYPD trained counter-terrorism cops

By David Gardner

Mayor Michael Bloomberg has blasted the use of a controversial movie portraying American Muslims as extremists to help train New York police officers.

The mayor said police chiefs used ‘terrible judgment’ in screening The Third Jihad to nearly 1,500 recruits.

‘As soon as they found out about it, they stopped it,’ added Mr. Bloomberg.

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Image: In the video, the White House is shown with a black flag flying overhead and the words Islam Will Dominate

Image: In the video, the White House is shown with a black flag flying overhead and the words Islam Will Dominate

The movie – which was played during counter-terrorism training seminars – features scenes of Christians being shot in the head, car bombs exploding and a doctored picture of a black Islamic flag is shown flying over the White House.

   
Egypt Releases 27 Copts Falsely Detained in Maspero Massacre

By Mary Abdelmassih

(AINA) -- The Cairo Criminal Court decided this week to accept the appeal and release, pending investigations, the remaining 27 Coptic detainees arrested in connection with the events of Maspero Massacre on October 9, where 27 Copts were killed and 329 injured (AINA 10-10-2011).

This decision was hailed by the church and the various Coptic rights groups. Besides welcoming the decision of the civilian court as a just verdict considering that the detainees were all innocent, it showed, according to various Coptic organizations, the injustice of the military prosecution's investigations. A view shared among all Copts is that releasing the detainees is not enough, those responsible for the killings should be brought to justice.

 

Speak up for Christianity, Cameron tells Archbishop: PM calls on the Church to defend 'values and moral code' of the Bible

  • PM said it's easier to be Jewish or Muslim in Britain than in a secular country like France
  • Britons 'treasured' responsibility, hard work, charity, compassion, humility, self-sacrifice, love and pride in working for the common good, says PM
  • Even admitted he was only a 'vaguely practising' Christian with 'full of doubts' about theological issues

By Tim Shipman

Taking a moral stand: Prime Minister David Cameron said it was time to teach right from wrong

Taking a moral stand: Prime Minister David Cameron said it was time to teach right from wrong

David Cameron last night called on the Archbishop of Canterbury to lead a return to the ‘moral code’ of the Bible.

In a highly personal speech about faith, the Prime Minister accused Dr Rowan Williams of failing to speak ‘to the whole nation’ when he criticised Government austerity policies and expressed sympathy with the summer rioters.


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