Egypt Independent

Parliament committee calls for ‘trial’ of local rights groups rejecting Egypt UNSECO nominee



The head of the Egyptian Parliament’s Human Rights Committee Alaa Abed called on the government to hold accountable the Egyptian non-governmental organizations that showed hostility towards the candidacy of Egyptian nominee Moushira Khattab for UNSECO’s head position.

According to a statement released from Abed, the NGOs should be subjected to prompt trial over charges of being non-patriotic and adopt stances that are similar to ones released from the US-based Human Rights Watch organization that broadcasts inaccurate reports on human rights’ conditions in Egypt.

Recently, many Egyptian rights groups have protested against the country’s candidate for UNESCO’s top job, claiming that she is not qualified for the post due to her “complicity” in Egypt’s state repression. These groups released a statement in which they asserted that Moushira Khattab has continued to be silent on the state’s closure of several libraries and cultural institutions in the country.

A leading human rights lawyer and head of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information, Gamal Eid, has campaigned against Khattab’s nomination for the UNESCO role.

He started his campaign after he appealed for her help following raids by security agents at three of the six libraries he set up in Egypt’s poor neighborhoods with prize money from a human rights award that he won.

He tried to ask for the help of Khattab but she told him that the courts would have the final say on the matter, which was later upheld by President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi. So far, there have been no court cases on the library closures.