News / Africa

Analyst: No Appetite for Inclusive Rights in Egypt

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, talks with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi before a meeting at the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, June 22, 2014.  U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, talks with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi before a meeting at the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, June 22, 2014.
x
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, talks with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi before a meeting at the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, June 22, 2014.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, talks with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi before a meeting at the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt, June 22, 2014.
James Butty
Middle East analyst Nezar al-Sayyad said US Secretary of State John Kerry’s call on Egypt’s new leaders to embrace democracy and press freedom may fall on deaf ears because Egyptians do not seem to be interested.  

During his visit to Egypt, Kerry urged Egyptian leaders to uphold the universal rights of freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association, and due process.

But, Al-Sayyad, chair of the University of California Berkeley’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies, said there is no appetite in Egypt to include the Muslim Brotherhood at any level of political life.

“I think that the real problem that Secretary Kerry is facing in Egypt right now is the fact that Egyptians are not interested in hearing, particularly from the United States, about freedom of the press, or freedom of expression, or even fair trial, particularly for the Muslim Brotherhood, people that the majority of Egyptians today consider terrorists,” he said.

Al-Sayyad also said the US must make it clear to the Egyptian authorities that there are strings attached to restoring aid.

“I do hope that Kerry’s message will not totally fall on deaf ears, and it will be understood that, look, while we are restoring military aid, you are still not in our good book yet, and you still have to ensure a return of some of the freedoms,” Al-Sayyad said.

An Egyptian court over the weekend confirmed the death sentence for 183 Islamists, including Mohamed Badie, the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.

The court had originally sentenced 683 people to death on charges stemming from the murder and attempted murder of police officers in Minya province last year.

The death sentences from the speedy March trial sparked an international outcry.

Al-Sayyad said the sentences will most likely be reversed and the defendants could possibly receive presidential pardons.

“In fact, if you have been following Egyptian media, there were more than 500 individuals who had been condemned to death, and many of these cases have already come back to court on appeal.  So, it’s very clear that the government of Egypt was almost using some of these sentences as a warning, particularly to the Muslim Brotherhood folks that, if you continue to engage in demonstrations, we may use the full force of the law to prosecute you and, in fact, imprison you forever,” Al-Sayyad said.
Butty interview with AlSayyad
Butty interview with AlSayyadi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Mali's Female Basketball Players Rebound After Islamist Occupation

Islamist extremists ruled northern Mali for most of 2012, imposing strict Sharia law, and now some 18 months later, the region is slowly getting back on its feet More

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

Many Chinese-made products go unsold, for now, with numerous Vietnamese consumers still angry over recent dispute More

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid