Egypt’s parliament approves the state of emergency and passes a law to purge political opponents

37

Egypt’s house of representatives approved, on Monday, the presidential decision to extend the state of emergency declared by the presidential decision no. 174 of 2021.

“The state of emergency is to extend for 3 months starting from the Saturday of 24 July,” stipulated the presidential declaration no. 290 of 2021. “This is due to the serious security and health conditions that the country suffers.”

The state of emergency was declared for the first time in April 2017 after two terrorist attacks on churches in Tanta and Alexandria that killed 45 persons at least. Since then onwards, the state of emergency was not ended. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi used to renew it every three months with a formal approval from the sham parliament. Every six months, the state of emergency is suspended for a day in order to circumvent of the constitution that prevents the renewal of the state of emergency for more than 2 periods, each of them equals 3 months.

The House of Representatives also approved the law that allows the dismissal of public officials who are proven to belong to the Muslim Brotherhood or to a terrorist group. Reuters reported that this law is part of the state’s crackdown against political opponents whether Islamists or liberals. The new law violates article 53 of the Egyptian Constitutions that bans discrimination between citizens according to their political opinions, and article 65 that guarantees the freedom of thought, opinion and expression.

It is noteworthy that the government used to dismiss employees according to political attitudes before passing the recent legislation. In October 2019, the minister of education Tarek Shawky declared the dismissal of 1070 teachers due to belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood, despites there was no judicial evidence of such belonging.