Bricks in the Wall: El Nadeem, the NGO Law, and Egypt’s Crackdown

Source: The Tahrir Institute For Middle East Policy
Author(s): Hussein Baoumi

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Yesterday, the El Nadeem Center for Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture was closed by Egyptian security forces, following a crackdown on most of that country’s public sphere that Human Rights Watch and others are calling a human rights crisis. Repressing civil society in Egypt is not a new development. Since at least the 1952 revolution, the Egyptian state has employed a variety of tools to control and limit the influence of civil society. However, the current phase marks a radical and dangerous development, and a new law governing nongovernmental organizations (currently in bureaucratic limbo between the parliament, the presidency, and the State Council) is threatening the very existence of Egypt’s civil society. The law would legalize repressive practices against civil society by enshrining the crackdown mechanisms into law….

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