Egypt in the News on 22 November 2020
Human rights topped coverage of Egypt in the foreign press over the weekend following the arrest of Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) executive Gasser Abdel Razek just days after authorities detained two other senior staffers. Coverage is everywhere: Reuters | the Associated Press | New York Times | Washington Post | CNN | Financial Times | Deutsche Welle.
The international community is being very vocal: The US State Department joined a number of senators and President-elect Joe Biden’s foreign policy aide expressing concerns at the arrests. The EU, UN, UK, Germany and Canada all issued similar statements calling for their release.
The Egyptian Foreign Ministry said Egypt respects the rule of law and that the right to organize in civil society is protected under the constitution, but said “no group of persons enjoy immunity for their work in any field.” The Foreign Ministry urged other nations to refrain from interfering in Egypt’s domestic affairs. Reuters and the AP have more on the fallout.
US Senators from both sides of the political aisle are separately lobbying for the release of two other rights advocates, one of whom was imprisoned last year, the Hill reported.
Alleged terrorist attack hits North Sinai pipeline: Daesh have claimed responsibility for an explosion that hit a natural gas pipeline running between El Arish and El Qantara in North Sinai on Thursday. Reuters and the Associated Press have the details.
Elsewhere: The Economist looks at why doctors in Egypt and the Middle East at large are likely to take their talents abroad in search of better pay and working conditions.