Gov’t Prevents Citizens & Media From Attending Judges’ Trial
Gov’t Prevents Citizens & Media From Attending Judges’ Trial
Wednesday, May 17,2006 00:00

In a step designed to cover up the unacceptable oppressive practices of the Egyptian regime and which reveals the refusal of the regime to unleash the freedom of _expression and the free political practice, the Ministry of the Interior issued a statement on Tuesday, 16 May 2006, in which it declared as “illegal” any unauthorized protest rallies. (It is practically impossible in Egypt to get an authorization for a demonstration)
In that statement, the Ministry of the Interior regarded as “illegal” the protest rallies that took place last Thursday- in solidarity with pro-reform judiciary counselors Hisham al-Bastaweesy and Mahmoud Makki, Deputies of the President of the Court of Cassation-  and that it would not allow any media organ to cover the court hearing for the two judges to be held next Thursday, except for those having a prior authorization.

Next Thursday, 18 May, a hearing will be held as part of the trial decided for al-Bastaweesy and Makki before a disciplinary board for having uncovered cases of rigging the last legislative elections that took place in November and December 2005.
These were cases that benefited the ruling National Party.

Another Egyptian court will examine the appeal of the president of the Ghad (Tomorrow) Party, Ayman Nour against a lower court’s judgment against him on charges of forging powers of attorney needed for the founding of his party, a case that observers  unanimously consider as “fabricated”.

It is to be mentioned that security forces have resorted to the most brutal forms of suppression against participants in demonstrations that were staged last Thursday in solidarity with Makki and al-Bastaweesy. In suppressing those and other demonstrations, including sexual harassment and abuses by security personnel of several women participants, security forces are utilizing the provisions of the Emergency Law that was recently extended for a further couple of years by the government using its automatic majority in the People’s Assembly (parliament) that was obtained though wide-spread rigging of the elections as revealed by the two judges in question, among many other observers.

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