Thursday, February 11, 2016

Five years after revolt, Egypt has come full circle

On Feb. 11, 2011, the Arab Spring revolution that spread to Egypt ousted longtime strongman Hosni Mubarak amid hopes of replacing his military dictatorship with democracy and economic reforms. Five years later, Egypt has come full circle: The military is back in charge, the economy is worse and political dissidents are imprisoned.
Egypt’s current President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, a former general, has cracked down on dissent as he fights a violent insurgency and unemployment is higher than before the revolution. His goal, he says, is stability and economic development.
Unemployment, a major rallying cry during the 2011 revolution, is now at 12.8%, compared to 8.9% in the last quarter of 2010. Ongoing turmoil has hurt tourism, Egypt's top industry. Tourist visits peaked in 2010 at 14 million and were expected to be around 9 million for 2015, according to The Guardian newspaper.
And police brutality, another major complaint during the revolt, is as bad or worse than before, according to rights groups.
Dr. Morsi replaced Mubarak in 2012 as the first elected president in a fair election. But Morsi is now in prison again, awaiting execution under a death sentence imposed last year. He was deposed in 2013 by the army, backed by millions of confused secular-minded and supporters of the military regime who demonstrated against him and his Muslim Brotherhood colleagues.
Morsi is also serving a 20-year sentence for allegedly detaining and torturing demonstrators. Several other leading Muslim Brotherhood figures are also awaiting execution, including the group's religious leader, Mohammed Badie.
The military's overthrow of the Morsi regime as Sisi took charge in 2013 resulted in a bloodbath, as hundreds of the Muslim Brotherhood's supporters were gunned down in the streets, and tens of thousands of people — including militants, demonstrators and journalists — were rounded up, detained and beaten.
Among the journalists charged by Morsi's government is freelance photographer Mahmoud Abou Zeid, also known as Shawkan, who has been in jail for more than 900 days, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Abou Zeid, was due in court Feb. 7, along with more than 700 defendants facing charges from rioting to attempted murder.
The Cairo Criminal Court postponed the hearing until March 26, because it did not have a cage large enough to accommodate all the defendants, the journalist committee reported, citing lawyers and state media reports. 
Where would the court consider putting into cage some 700 innocent people? Only in Egypt, perhaps!
The USA Today has published an article which is worth reading. You can read this by clicking here.

No comments:

Post a Comment