EGYPT URGED TO ALLOW PEACEFUL MASS PROTESTS
24 January 2011
Amnesty International is urging the Egyptian authorities not to crack down on planned nationwide demonstrations tomorrow, amid reports of police threats to opposition members.
Demonstrations against unemployment, police abuses and corruption are planned tomorrow, but opposition activists, including members of the banned Muslim Brotherhood organization and the National Association for Change, have reportedly been summoned and threatened with arrest and detention if they go ahead with plans to protest.
Authorities have issued warnings that the police will deal “firmly and decisively” with those taking part in unauthorized protests.
“Egypt needs to allow peaceful protests, and stop arresting and intimidating peaceful opposition activists” said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa programme.
“The country’s security forces have a worrying record when dealing with demonstrators, and we urge them to refrain from excessive and disproportionate force tomorrow.”