22 May 2017
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  • » 04/02/2013, 00.00

    EGYPT

    Muslim Brotherhood wants to gag every Egyptian, Jasmine Revolution leader says



    For Nagui Damian, a young Copt who participated in the anti-Mubarak uprising, the recent charges laid against satirist Bassem Yousef are a way to intimidate everyone in the country. Sharing the ideals of the revolution, farm workers in Upper Egypt have organised the first mass protests against Islamists.

    Cairo (AsiaNews) - "The atmosphere of terror created by Muslim Brotherhood does not only affect opposition parties and media, but touches all the Egyptians who do not think like the Islamists," said Nagui Damian speaking to AsiaNews.

    For the young Coptic Catholic, who played a leading role in the Jasmine Revolution, the recent crackdown by Prosecutor General Talaat Abdallah against the media represents an authoritarian move by the government to intimidate and gag every Egyptian ahead of upcoming elections in July

    Preceded in recent weeks by the arrest by the military of dozens of activists in Cairo and Alexandria, out in protest against the law limiting demonstrations, this has reached a crescendo with the indictment of famous TV host Bassem Youssef (pictured). Meanwhile, the Islamist-dominated Shura Council yesterday voted to allow religious slogans during the election campaign.

    "The Muslim Brotherhood is doing everything possible to hold onto power," said Nagui Damian, whilst the "economic and institutional crisis of recent years has been driving more and more people towards the ideals of the revolution. Now farm workers in Upper Egypt are also protesting against the Islamists. Even the least educated of them have stopped believing in the president's statements, always blaming the country's problems on the men of Mubarak's old regime.

    According to the young man, the media crackdown and glowing praise of religion are a way to prevent people from knowing the true face of Mohamed Morsi and his allies.

    Prosecutor General Talaat Abdallah went after Bassem Youssef, Egypt's best-known satirist, for insulting the president on his TV show el Bernameg. Taken into custody last Sunday, Youssef was released after spending five hours at the public prosecutor's office and posting bail for US$ 2,200.

    Police sources said that Abdallah was preparing more charges against the satirist, including the charge of constituting a threat to public security.

    Considered Egypt's Jon Stewart, Youssef has been a controversial figure for Egyptian and foreign media.

    Opposition activists and party leaders are concerned about President Morsi's government authoritarianism. In recent months, the president has appointed cronies to national and local courts.

    After the Muslim Brotherhood came to power, the satirist has repeatedly criticised in his show the president and the country's slide towards Islamism, which attracts more than 30 million viewers.  

    His humour and the support it has generated have not gone unnoticed. TV channels operated by Salafists have started a vitriolic campaign against the satirist, who is Christian by origin.

    His satire has led to charges of blasphemy, denigrating Islam, and insulting President Mohamed Morsi, accusations that he has always rejected as specious and false. (S.C.)

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    See also

    26/01/2013 EGYPT
    Egypt, clashes between police and demonstrators: 12 dead and nearly 500 injured
    It is the second anniversary of the Jasmine Revolution. The most serious clashes in Suez, where the army blocked the entrance to the channel. President Mohamed Morsi threatens to use an iron fist against the perpetrators of violence. Port Said in flames after the verdict on the massacre of supporters of the February 2, 2012. Police barracks attacked.

    25/01/2012 EGYPT
    Tahrir Square flooded by people who want to continue the Jasmine Revolution
    Nagui Diamian, a young Catholic Coptic leader, talks about the youth protest a year since the demonstrations that led to the fall of President Mubarak. Thousands have arrived from all over Egypt to demand real change for the country, which is still in the hands of the military. Meanwhile, the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafists try to monopolise the situation following their electoral victory.

    29/09/2011 EGYPT
    The new electoral law benefits former regime and the Muslim Brotherhood
    The army reserves 1 / 4 of the seats in parliament for individual leaders without a party. The Egyptian political movements threaten to boycott the November elections. The struggle for power crushes the ideals of the jasmine revolution.

    23/04/2013 EGYPT
    Egyptian judge suspended for imposing 80 lashes on a drunken man
    Hussein Anan, a judge in Matay, is now under investigation. He justified the decision citing Article 2 of the new constitution, which relies on the Qur'an to administer the law. According to the spokesman of the Catholic Church, more and more positions are being filled with fundamentalists who want to impose Islamic law throughout the country. Ordinary Egyptians and the National Association of Judges are fighting the Muslim Brotherhood's power grab.

    17/12/2012 EGYPT
    New Constitution splits Egypt. And Salafists
    Still waiting for referendum results on text which will be voted on next December 23 in 17 other provinces. But fraud is considered almost mandatory by most voters, most of whom, however still cast their ballot. The opposition united against President Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood, and criticize text (which discriminates against anyone who is not a Brotherhood member) even splitting radical Islam.



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