UN Secretary-General meets with Egyptian rights organization

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon met with Bahey Eldin Hassan, Co-founder and Director of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, on Wednesday at the UN Headquarters in New York. 
During their meeting, the two discussed the current political and human rights situation in Egypt, which Western governments have already voiced concern over.
“The Secretary-General expressed interest in the work of Arab and Egyptian human rights organizations in promoting and implementing universal principles and standards of human rights,” the UN said in a statement.
Among the concerns are the jailing of activists, peaceful demonstrators and suspension of NGOs in Egypt, along with the declaration of the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist group.
US State Department Spokesperson Marie Harff said during a press conference on 30 December that the United States is “deeply concerned about all of the politically motivated arrests, detentions and charges in Egypt.”
US Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated these concerns during a phone call with Foreign Minister Fahmy on 26 December, Harff said.
“These actions raise questions about the rule of law being applied impartially and equitably, and do not move Egypt’s transition forward,” Harff added.
London also voiced concern over the situation, releasing a statement after the sentencing of democracy and human rights activists Ahmed Maher, Ahmed Douma and Mohammed Adel.
“This represents a serious setback to attempts to return Egypt to the democratic path and undermines the values expressed by Egyptians during the Revolution of January 2011,” said Mark Simmonds, a minister at the UK’s Foreign Office. “The UK believes the freedom to protest peacefully is vital in any democracy and calls on Egypt’s interim leaders to ensure that they uphold all Egypt’s international human rights obligations.”

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