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revue de presse sur l'actualité culturelle, archéologique, politique et sociale de l'Égypte
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Opposition group says dialogue with presidency is not an option

Opposition group says dialogue with presidency is not an option | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it
Egypt-actus's insight:

Egypt's main opposition group said it rejected President Mohamed Mursi's invitation for national dialogue and called for a round table meeting with four political parties on Thursday.

The National Salvation Front's initiative for a discussion assembly is an attempt to stop the state of deterioration Egypt is going through.

The front invited the Salafi Nour Party, the 'Strong Egypt' Party, the Reform and Development Party, and a fourth party to discussions and said it rejected the invitation for national dialogue.

"Dialogue with the presidency is not an option," Mohamed Sami, head of al-Karama Party and member of the front, said at a press conference.

"Our demands were not met and we will not back down on our conditions for dialogue."

The front is lining up to stand up to the systematic plan to hijack the state, Azzazi Ali Azzazi, member of both the front and the Popular Current, stated.

The front renewed its demands to form a new cabinet, amend the constitution, sack the chief prosecutor general, issue the transitional justice law, ban militias and sack the minister of interior "for his failure to manage the security crisis in the country".

 

This content is from :Aswat Masriya  
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Statements Conflict Over Fate Of Egypt's Hisham Qandil Govt

Statements Conflict Over Fate Of Egypt's Hisham Qandil Govt | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it
Recent statements issued by the presidency, government and Ghad Al-Thawra Party head Ayman Nour have conflicted as to whether or not Egypt's current cabinet would be replaced – a longstanding opposition demand – in the short-term future.

Nour, who has recently played the role of mediator between the presidency and the opposition National Salvation Front (NSF) umbrella group, said on Tuesday that he expected Egypt's current political impasse to be resolved "within days," going on to voice expectations that the current government of Prime Minister Hisham Qandil would be replaced imminently.

On Sunday, a presidential source was quoted as saying that President Mohamed Morsi "doesn't mind" the appointment of a new cabinet, as long as it "enjoyed consensus" and received guarantees from the opposition that Egypt's turbulent political situation would stabilise once new ministers were sworn into office.

However, cabinet spokesman Alaa El-Hadidi on Tuesday stated that the dismissal – or even reshuffle – of the Qandil government was "not on the table," asserting that the president was a "major supporter" of the current cabinet.

Egypt has suffered political deadlock since the second anniversary of the 25 January 2011 revolution, which was followed by a series of violent protests and clashes throughout the country.

The NSF, for its part, has vowed to boycott upcoming parliamentary polls – along with all talks with the presidency – until Morsi meets a raft of preconditions. These include the replacement of the government, the dismissal of the Morsi-appointed prosecutor-general, and the launch of credible investigations into recent political violence..

 

More on: http://amwalalghad.com/en/news/egypt-news/15300-statements-conflict-over-fate-of-egypts-hisham-qandil-govt.html

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Opposition front says it was not invited to national dialogue

Opposition front says it was not invited to national dialogue | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it
Egypt-actus's insight:

The National Salvation Front and its members did not receive an official invitation from Egypt's presidency to attend national dialogue, a front spokesman said.

A flood of initiatives poured on us since a court order halted the election process yet we are still waiting for an official invitation, spokesman Khaled Dawood told Aswat Masriya.

We welcome the dialogue but we have clear demands and agenda which include reshuffling the cabinet, sacking the chief public prosecutor, forming a committee to amend the constitution and amending the election law, Dawood said.

"The presidency is not serious about any invitation for dialogue."

The oppositionist National Salvation Front announced in January it will boycott the upcoming elections if President Mohamed Mursi did not respond to its demands.

 

This content is from :Aswat Masriya
http://en.aswatmasriya.com/news/view.aspx?id=c3be1e11-6fa0-49e1-8311-bb43c0b1336f  
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Egypte : Qui perdra son souffle le premier ?

Egypte : Qui perdra son souffle le premier ? | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

La tenue du sommet islamique au Caire a été une réussite incontestable du Président Mohamed Morsi, une réussite qui a poussé au deuxième plan, dans un certain sens, la scène honteuse du lynchage télévisé et en direct d’un citoyen, en plein rue du Caire et aux grandes heures d’écoute.

 

Les malheurs de certains peuvent faire le bonheur des autres, et l’opposition du régime égyptien a bénéficié, par l’acte criminel de policier, d’une chance inattendue, voire, inespérée, dans sa lutte acharnée contre le président islamiste, qu’elle cherche à abattre par tous les moyens.

Commençons par le commencement
Il était bien clair que le chef d’Etat a réussi son pari sur le facteur « temps » et a pu arracher, bien que difficilement, une bénédiction populaire de « sa Constitution ».
L’opposition a joué d’une façon hypocrite, pour ne pas dire malhonnête, faisant un abcès de fixation du pourcentage faible de votants, qui n’a pas dépassé 32% des inscrits. Les ténors de l’opposition ont crié sur tous les toits que le nombre d’abstentionnistes, 68%, doit s’ajouter au vote négatif. Ce qui est ridicule, car un refus populaire ne peut être pris en considération que par un « non », direct, clair et sans équivoque.   

 

Plus: http://www.elmoudjahid.com/fr/actualites/39192

 

 

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Egypte: le secrétaire d'Etat américain veut pousser à un consensus

Egypte: le secrétaire d'Etat américain veut pousser à un consensus | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Le secrétaire d'Etat américain John Kerry était en visite au Caire samedi afin de pousser à un consensus entre pouvoir et opposition pour sortir l'Egypte de l'impasse politique et de la crise économique.

Alors que M. Kerry arrivait au Caire en provenance de Turquie, des manifestants ont mis le feu à un commissariat à Port Saïd (nord-est), une ville qui observe un mouvement de désobéissance civile pour la troisième semaine consécutive pour protester contre la politique du président Mohamed Morsi.

 

Le responsable américain, qui effectue sa première tournée internationale depuis sa prise de fonctions le 1er février, doit s'entretenir avec M. Morsi. Il a rencontré le chef de la Ligue arabe Nabil al-Arabi avant des discussions en soirée avec son homologue égyptien Mohammed Kamel Amr.

 

"Il travaille à établir des contacts avec le gouvernement, l'armée, et les personnes impliquées dans la nouvelle Egypte: les dirigeants politiques, les chefs d'ONG, les hommes d'affaires", selon un responsable du département d'Etat.(...)

 

Le secrétaire d'Etat "ne va pas leur dire ce qu'il faut faire", mais il soulignera le fait que "la seule manière de se faire entendre, c'est de participer aux élections", a indiqué aux journalistes le cadre du département d'Etat.

 

Un consensus politique faciliterait un accord avec le Fonds monétaire international (FMI) pour un prêt de 4,8 milliards de dollars, jugé capital pour restaurer la confiance dans l'économie égyptienne.

 

Des responsables égyptiens ont indiqué poursuivre les négociations avec le FMI concernant ce prêt, reporté en raison des troubles politiques et qui pourrait être signé une fois le nouveau Parlement en place, en juillet.

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Les Démocrates contre la démocratie: le piège de la radicalisation politique en Égypte

Par Alan Beuret/Huffingtonpost

 

À l'issue de la grave crise politique de novembre décembre 2012, l'opposition égyptienne avait décidé, à travers le Front pour le Salut National (FSN), de cesser les manifestations pour se concentrer sur les législatives et tenter de constituer une minorité de blocage en prévention d'éventuelles révisions constitutionnelles. Mais ce vœu pieu a rapidement volé en éclats . (...)

Alors qu'elle a eu deux ans depuis la révolution, l'opposition n'a jamais fait les efforts nécessaires pour conquérir le terrain politique. Face aux Frères Musulmans, une organisation politique vieille de 84 ans, dotée d'un appareil politique considérable, menant des actions de diffusion autant que des actions sociales, capable d'occuper le terrain, disposant des relais a travers tout le pays, notamment les mosquées, et qui a su occuper le vide politique, identitaire et social laissée par la chute de Moubarak, l'opposition a fait pale figure.

Politiquement divisée, elle ne s'unit que dans la rue, grâce à l'ennemi commun, mais s'avère incapable de dépasser les ambitions individuelles sur le terrain politique Mais, surtout elle n'a jamais véritablement pris son bâton de pèlerin, pour diffuser son message dans les campagnes, ni pu concentrer assez de moyens derrière une seule organisation pour se doter d'une machine électorale digne de ce nom. Beaucoup d'égyptiens ont voté pour les Frères, qui, je le rappelle, n'ont jamais fait campagne sur la question religieuse, simplement parce que c'est la seule formation dont ils connaissaient le programme et les actions. C'est donc très logiquement que l'opposition s'est fait aplatir à toutes les consultations électorales post-révolutionnaires. Au lieu de reconnaître cette échec, l'opposition s'est jetée à corps perdu dans la seule action ou elle parvient a s'unir, parler d'une seule voie et se sentir puissante: la contestation par la rue. Ainsi, depuis l'élection de Mohamed Morsi, elle a organisé de vastes manifestations; nourrit, par de multiples plaintes, une véritable guérilla judiciaire contre la présidence et l'alliance islamiste; boycotté l'Assemblée Constituante pendant 5 mois, et elle refuse toute solution négociée avec Morsi, en se présentant comme les seuls représentants du peuple.


Plus : http://www.huffingtonpost.fr/alan-beuret/elections-egypte_b_2764796.html

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Mursi in Secret Talks with Opposition

Mursi in Secret Talks with Opposition | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

The Egyptian presidency has conducted secret talks with its political opponents in an effort to convince them to participate in the upcoming parliamentary elections, Asharq Al-Awsat has learned.

Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi’s plan to hold elections in April has been hit by the announcement of the opposition National Salvation Front (NSF) that it will boycott the poll. However Asharq Al-Awsat has learned that in a bid to salvage the plan, the Egyptian president has opened secret communication channels with the opposition coalition in a bid to persuade its leaders to reverse their decision.

Source with knowledge of the secret negotiations revealed that President Mursi offered a limited cabinet reshuffle in return for the NSF’s agreement to participate. The source emphasized that this offer did not include removing Egyptian Minister for Local Development, Mohamed Bishr, from office. The appointment of Bishr, a senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau, was strongly opposed by liberal and secular force groups.

The source, who spoke to Asharq Al-Awsat on the condition of anonymity, revealed that the Egyptian presidency conducted indirect talks with Dr. Al-Sayyid El-Badawi, head of the liberal Wafd Party. The source claimed that Mursi also offered to replace Egypt’s unpopular Prosecutor-General Talaat Abdullah if the NSF agreed to take part in the elections.

Prosecutor General Talaat Abdullah’s tenure has been beset by controversy since his appointment by Mursi in November 2012. Less than one month after assuming office, Abdullah submitted a letter of resignation after hundreds of public prosecutors staged a sit-in protest outside his office. Mursi did not accept his resignation. The prosecutor general has also been accused by many activists of detaining protesters for political reasons.

The Egyptian source asserted that the secret talks regarding a potential cabinet reshuffle did not include the possibility of Bishr being shown the door because of the sensitivity of his relationship with the president. In addition to being a senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Guidance Bureau, President Mursi’s son is married to Bishr’s daughter. (Asharq al-Awsat)

 

More : http://www.aawsat.net/2013/03/article55294401

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Is Egypt Heading Towards Civil War?

Is Egypt Heading Towards Civil War? | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Across Cairo, in the upscale suburb of Heliopolis, thousands of demonstrators had surged past a military barricade and up to the walls of the presidential palace. Abdel Hamid and his colleagues believed that the country’s opposition planned to storm the palace and overthrow Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s Islamist president—or that the Army might seize on the chaos and stage a coup. If either scenario happened, Abdel Hamid says, Islamists were prepared to take the country back by force. They’d stop playing by the rules of Egypt’s democratic experiment and impose their vision of religious rule.

 

The first step would be to take over the airwaves and declare that the battle had begun. “I was happy and sad,” Abdel Hamid remembers. “I was sad about the situation the country would have been taken to—to this point where we were clashing with one another. But at the same time, I was happy we were so close to announcing the Islamic State. So it was like, OK, go ahead.”

 

In the end, the night concluded peacefully. The protesters left the palace, and Abdel Hamid and his colleagues returned to the original focus of their sit-in, protesting what they saw as unfair coverage of the anti-Morsi demonstrations. But the specter of political violence continues to loom over Egypt. On one side, the country’s opposition forces are pushing for a so-called revolution against Morsi. On the other, Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist allies are retrenching in their support of the president.

 

(...) Mohamed ElBaradei, the Nobel laureate leading the front, had called the approaching elections an “act of deception” and compared them to the rigged votes held under former dictator Hosni Mubarak. After the boycott was announced, another prominent opposition politician declared, “The aim now is to bring down this regime,” according to the Associated Press.

 

Yet both analysts and Islamists warn that if the opposition were to succeed in ousting Morsi, it would carry grave risks for the country.

 

Egypt-actus's insight:

Morsi’s supporters say they’re defending not just the president but Egypt’s young democracy. And they often speak darkly of the repercussions if Morsi were somehow forced from office (...)

 

Moaz Abdel Karim, a political operative in Cairo and former Brotherhood member, says that the country’s myriad Islamist groups are “still sticking to democratic power, because they’re stronger in it.” (The Brotherhood’s Freedom & Justice Party dominated the last parliamentary elections last year.) But behind closed doors, Abdel Karim says, many now discuss the idea of reacting violently if Morsi is seriously threatened. “In the case of having that [democratic] power taken away from them, they would respond with violence, and they would see that violence as protecting the state,” he says.(...)

 

More on: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/03/01/is-egypt-heading-towards-civil-war.html

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Egypt's liberals ponder return to military rule amid fears of 'Kafkaesque' Islamist state

Egypt's liberals ponder return to military rule amid fears of 'Kafkaesque' Islamist state | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

CAIRO, Egypt -- Liberals and other opponents of the Islamist government in Egypt have called for the military to resume control of the country if its dire economy continues to worsen amid ongoing political turmoil.

On Tuesday, a coalition of leftist and liberal parties known as the National Salvation Front announced it would boycott upcoming parliamentary elections, claiming President Mohammed Morsi is driving through an Islamist agenda and breaking a promise to govern on behalf of all Egyptians.

 

Without the NSF’s participation, many fear Islamist parties led by the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party and the more conservative Salafist parties will sweep the elections and dominate the House of Representatives. This would give them near complete control of the executive and legislative branches of government.

 

Amid the political strife, Egypt’s economy is on the brink of economic collapse –  the government announced earlier this month it had run out of money to continue to pay for fuel subsidies.

Former United Nations nuclear agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei, who now leads the moderate Dustour party, was recently quoted by Foreign Policy magazine as saying that if “Egypt is on the brink of default [on its international debts], if law and order is absent, [the army] has a national duty to intervene.”

"I am sure they are as worried as everyone else. You cannot exclude that the army will intervene to restore law and order," he told reporters. (..)

 

“Absence of law & order, due process & cascade of Fatwas & ‘legal’ investigations vs opposition fast tracks Egypt towards a Kafkaesque state,” he wrote in another tweet.

 

While liberals supported the revolution against former strongman Hosni Mubarak, some now see the idea of a military regime as a lesser of two evils if the alternative is the country's collapse.

Opposition newspapers, including el-Dostoor and el-Masry el-Youm, have highlighted the failures of Morsi's government with several pundits suggesting the military may have to intervene if the situation continues to deteriorate. (...)

 

Islamist parties have dismissed the opposition’s election boycott, saying because they can’t win at the ballot box, they are boycotting the process and thus are jeopardizing Egypt’s fragile democracy.

 

All this adds to the pressure on its equally fragile economy.

 

More on: http://worldnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/02/28/17118211-egypts-liberals-ponder-return-to-military-rule-amid-fears-of-kafkaesque-islamist-state?lite

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Will Egypt’s democrats get serious?

Will Egypt’s democrats get serious? | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Two years ago, the popular narrative on Egypt was all about a nation getting rid of a despot and heading for a golden future. Today, we have a litany of woes depicting Egypt as a wayward ship in a stormy sea.

But what if both narratives miss the point?

 

Hosni Mubarak was no choirboy — but neither, compared to Saddam Hussein in Iraq or Bashar al-Assad in Syria, was he much of monster. Nor was there much chance that resource-poor and overpopulated Egypt would break out of the cycle of poverty anytime soon. Thus, much of the optimism inspired by “Arab Spring” was misplaced.

 

Today’s pessimism may be as unjustified.

Egypt is taking the first steps in a long journey toward a new life in which the public would have a say in how the country is governed. In such a system, people would pay for their own mistakes in choosing wrong leaders and bad policies — rather than pay for mistakes made by unelected despots.

In that context, President Mohammad Morsi’s announcement of fresh parliamentary elections is significant.

The Constitutional Court cancelled last year’s parliamentary elections on murky legal grounds. Morsi thought of rejecting the decision and convening the elected parliament — but then started to learn the beauty of compromise when compromise is justified, accepting the court’s ruling and promising new elections.

 

Last week, he announced a timetable for those elections(...). After the voting, the new parliament is to convene on July 2, ending a period where the presidency effectively combined legislative and executive powers.

 

It is vital that the planned elections take place on time and in conditions beyond reproach. Like Iraq, Egypt must learn to choose and change government only through elections. In that context, the threat by some liberal and secular groups to boycott the voting is badly misplaced.

 

But as things stand now, anti-Islamist parties are pursuing a strategy that could hardly be described as democratic and could even be suicidal. Rather than unite and mobilize to win the voting, these parties have opted either for the lazy solution of total boycott or are trying to destroy Morsi’s presidency with riots in the streets.

 

More on: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/will_egypt_democrats_get_serious_dm6lMxwU4QGul8vZAR7RjP

 

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Egypte : la principale force de l'opposition refuse de participer aux législatives du 22 avril

Egypte : la principale force de l'opposition refuse de participer aux législatives du 22 avril | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Par Alexandre Buccianti/RFI

Pour le Front du salut, participer aux élections c’est donner de la légitimité « à un simulacre de démocratie ». Le Front avait demandé des garanties. La première était la constitution d’un gouvernement neutre chargé de la conduite des élections, au lieu de l’actuel cabinet où les Frères musulmans occupent tous les postes susceptibles d’influencer l’opinion publique : les ministères de l’Information, de la Jeunesse, de l’Enseignement et des Affaires religieuses.

Le Front du salut a aussi rejeté la nouvelle loi électorale taillée sur mesure, surtout au niveau du découpage des circonscriptions, pour avantager les Frères musulmans. Des demandes rejetées par le président Morsi et sa Confrérie, même si le chef de l’Etat a tenu mardi une énième conférence de « dialogue national ». Une conférence où les islamistes dialoguaient avec les islamistes.

Mais même là, on a noté la contestation des salafistes du parti Al-Nour, qui était arrivé deuxième aux dernières législatives. Al-Nour, dont les revendications étaient similaires à celles du Front du salut.

 

Plux : http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20130227-egypte-la-principale-force-opposition-refuse-participer-legislatives-22-avril

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Égypte : début du dialogue national malgré l'absence du principal bloc d'opposition

Le dialogue national égyptien impliquant la présidence, les différentes forces politiques, l'opposition et les personnalités nationales, a débuté mardi soir en vue de discuter des moyens de garantir l'intégrité des élections législatives prochaines prévues le 22 avril.

Le président Mohamed Morsi, dirigeant ce dialogue, a de nouveau invité les forces politiques absentes jusqu'à présent à rallier le débat, soulignant l'importance du dialogue à ce stade critique de la transition de l'Égypte vers la démocratie.

" Je continue d'inviter toutes les forces à rallier ce dialogue (...) pour l'intégrité et la transparence des élections législatives prochaines", a déclaré M. Morsi dans son discours à l'ouverture de cette session.

Le président a réaffirmé que "les recommandations de ceux qui assistent à cette séance seront transmises à la Commission électorale suprême et soumises à son approbation".

Plus tôt mardi, le principal bloc d'opposition,le Front pour le salut national, a décidé de boycotter les élections législatives prochaines et de ne pas participer non plus à ce dialogue national.

"Nous ne pouvons pas participer aux élections législatives s'il n'y a pas une loi électorale équitable et un gouvernement impartial", a déclaré mardi aux journalistes Sameh Ashour, membre éminent du FSN et dirigeant du Syndicat des avocats, lors d'une conférence de presse, précisant que cette décision avait été prise par un consensus des membres du FSN. (Xinhua)

 

Plus : http://french.peopledaily.com.cn/96852/8146263.html

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US urges Egypt opposition to take part in election

By BRADLEY KLAPPER
Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) - The State Department wants Egypt's opposition to reverse its declared boycott of upcoming parliamentary elections.

Spokesman Edgar Vasquez says the U.S. is encouraging all Egyptian parties and potential candidates to compete in the staggered vote, which starts in April. He says the elections offer Egyptians an opportunity to have their voices heard.

The main opposition group, the liberal and secular National Salvation Front, declared Tuesday it would boycott the elections. The announcement is likely to add to Egypt's political instability.

Washington sees the parliamentary votes as an important milestone in Egypt's democratic transition.

Vasquez said Tuesday it was "critical" for Egyptian parties to take part so that Egyptians can select representatives from a broad range of political positions.

(CBS Atlanta)

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Egypt: Will The Army Step In? – OpEd

Egypt: Will The Army Step In? – OpEd | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Egypt is getting out of control: The police are on strike in a number of cities, the civil disobedience in Port Said is in its fourth week, hooligans are attacking and ransacking public buildings, and angry youth are clashing with anti-riot police on daily basis. The government has been unable to end chronic fuel shortages while large parts of Sinai suffer from lawlessness.

President Muhammad Mursi has failed to reach a compromise with the opposition National Salvation Front (NSF) which insists on boycotting legislative elections. The economy is suffering and negotiations with the IMF over a $ 4.8 billion loan are faltering. Everyday there is death and mayhem somewhere in the country.

Last week a high court ordered the suspension of parliamentary elections, called for by President Mursi two weeks ago, and referred the election law to the Constitutional Court. In the midst of strikes, clashes and political uncertainty, calls on the army to take over are getting louder.

The hardliners say counterrevolutionary forces are at work to undermine the presidency and efforts to stabilize the country.

 

Last week a high court ordered the suspension of parliamentary elections, called for by President Mursi two weeks ago, and referred the election law to the Constitutional Court. In the midst of strikes, clashes and political uncertainty, calls on the army to take over are getting louder.

The hardliners say counterrevolutionary forces are at work to undermine the presidency and efforts to stabilize the country.

 

The NSF, an umbrella of opposition parties, says it is Mursi’s authoritarian edicts that triggered Egypt’s current crisis. In fact it could be all these things. Certainly there are forces that do not want the conservatives to succeed. But President Mursi and the Muslim Brotherhood have failed to win the trust of the opposition. They are accused of acting unilaterally by imposing their own constitution and denying others a role in shaping the future of the country.

The opposition is suspicious of attempts by the Muslim Brotherhood to infiltrate the state’s secular institutions including the judiciary, the army and the Ministry of Interior. But the street is like a runaway train.

Egypt-actus's insight:

Rebellious youth no longer listen to the NSF. They want to topple the regime and start a revolution. And yes, remnants of the old system may be conspiring to disrupt attempts to end the state of anarchy. No one really knows who is behind recent attacks on newspapers, public buildings and businesses associated with the Islamists.(...)

 

More on: http://www.eurasiareview.com/13032013-egypt-will-the-army-step-in-oped/

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An immediate roadmap for the Egyptian opposition, by Tarek Osman

An immediate roadmap for the Egyptian opposition, by Tarek Osman | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Egyptian opposition parties must focus on clear strategies built around key economic messages, and be pragmatic in order to move forward


The current Egyptian opposition has two main objectives: putting Egypt on the route towards genuine democratisation and stopping the project that it believes political Islam is leading in the country and that it deems perilous to the first objective.


The opposition has two macro options: to continue to resort to street pressure, or to work through the ballot box. The first requires an ability to mobilise millions of protestors, regularly and on demand, something the opposition will not be able to sustain. This tactic attracts media attention, especially internationally; lends credibility to the notion that wide segments of Egyptians are against the ruling party’s programmes and ideas; but, crucially, has so far resulted in minimal achievements for the opposition.

Indeed, the opposition is increasingly sidelined, while the political process progresses – from the presidential election, to the handover from the military to the elected president, to the finalisation of the constitution, to the referendum on the constitution. Plus, this tactic exacts severe damage on the economy, which is already in a critical phase.


Now, the Egyptian opposition faces an election that will form the country’s parliament for the next few years. This is the last, and most crucial, step for the opposition to become an integral part of the country’s political establishment. Missing, or losing, this step would marginalise it and in turn, will enable the ruling forces to create their own opposition, a process of gradual domination of the political scene. The result would be the stifling of several components of Egyptian society at a moment of a colossal political transformation.

(Midan Masr)

 

More : http://www.midanmasr.com/en/article.aspx?ArticleID=271

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“Post-Arab Spring societies will not easily sacrifice the interrelation between religion and politics inside their minds”

“Post-Arab Spring societies will not easily sacrifice the interrelation between religion and politics inside their minds” | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Islamists in Egypt and Tunisia went from prison to ruling headquarters after the Arab Spring. The ouster of Ben Ali and Mubarak’s autocratic regimes, the public yearning for another revolution in socio-political and economic conditions, and the portrayal of Islamists in the image of the always-oppressed opposition had easily paved the way for this outcome.

Election results proved evidence. The Tunisian moderate Islamists of the Ennahda party gained almost 41% of the seats in the new constituent assembly, while the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood (MB) won 47% of the seats in parliamentary polls.

 

However, after spending roughly one year in governing positions, the MB and Ennahda seem under pressure from the angry masses, who feel that a zero-change status quo is currently in place. If you live in any of the two states, this is what you see on a daily basis: never ending protests and sit-ins; government responses that look too unpersuasive to fit complex, transitional periods; gradually collapsing economies; and the extent of societal discussion about democracy reduces by virtue of time. Meanwhile, secular parties continue to blame Islamists of attempting to impose an absolute stronghold over all state institutions, including police and military bodies.

 

Islamists raised the slogan “Islam is the solution” both before and after the 2011 popular uprisings, an approach that looked appealing to poor, uneducated and historically religious populations (...)

 

Then, who will win the game? “If we took the wrong decision by choosing the MB who fooled us, we have to think of the Salafists; they are sincerely pro-Islam,” a taxi driver told me. Ironically, the poor and middle class Egyptians, and even Tunisians, proved in the last two years to think of the country’s politicians in terms of their long beards and number of Quran recited within their political speeches: their electoral and political platforms do not weigh much of the equation.

 

More on: http://www.yourmiddleeast.com/opinion/bassem-aly-salafists-are-lucky_13556

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Political parties announce alliances ahead of parliamentary polls

Political parties announce alliances ahead of parliamentary polls | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

The moderate Islamist Wasat and Hadara Parties announced a coalition Wednesday ahead of upcoming parliamentary polls.

The parties said they aim to “resume the national struggle and resist attempts to hinder the establishment of Egypts constitutional institutions.”

During a press conference, the two parties said they remain committed to compromise and peace “which raises the interests of the nation above politics, establishes strong ties with other parties and rejects treason and blasphemy.”(...)

Wasat Party Chairman Abul El Mady said the alliance will back candidates in every constituency.

In  statements published on the Wasat Partys website Tuesday, spokesperson Amr Farouq said Wasat and Hadar worked well together during the last elections and the creation of the new Constitution, which was ratified in December.

Wasat won 10 seats in the previous lower house polls, while Hadara won one seat. The Peoples Assembly was disbanded in June 2012 due to violations of elections law.(...)

 

The sources revealed that the new alliance, in addition to their party, will comprise several Islamist political forces that could include the Watan, Asala, Raya, Islah Party and Shaab Parties as well as other revolutionary groups

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US Secretary of State to meet FM in Cairo amid NSF boycott

US Secretary of State to meet FM in Cairo amid NSF boycott | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

President Mohamed Morsy is meeting Saturday with newly-appointed US Secretary of State John Kerry during his visit to Egypt.

Kerry will also meet Arab League Chief Nabil al-Araby, as well as a group of political parties and a delegation of businessmen in Cairo.

Later, Kerry will meet with his counterpart Mohamed Kamel Amr at the Foreign Ministry, where both will hold a joint press conference.

Although senior members of the National Salvation Front, including Conference Party chief Amr Moussa, welcomed the visit, NSF leader and Popular Current head Hamdeen Sabbahi refused to meet with Kerry. Sabbahi said in a statement Friday that he discussed the meeting with fellow NSF leader Mohamed ElBaradei, after which he decided against the meeting.

Kerry’s visit is part of a nine-country trip through Europe and the Middle East, during which he will discuss a range of issues with allies, including the Syria conflict.

US Department of State spokesperson Victoria Nuland said that Kerry will also attempt to reach consensus with allies on economic reforms.

Edited translation from MENA (Egyp independent)


http://www.egyptindependent.com/news/us-secretary-state-meet-fm-cairo-amid-nsf-boycott

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With Kerry on the way, Egypt liberals angry at US

With Kerry on the way, Egypt liberals angry at US | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

As John Kerry heads to Egypt on Saturday for his first visit as secretary of state, he faces a barrage of accusations from liberal and secular Egyptians who say Washington is siding with the ruling Muslim Brotherhood in the country’s sharp political divisions.

The United States has had its own frustrations with the mainly liberal and secular opposition, which has been plagued by disorganization and divisions. This week, it pressed the main opposition grouping, the National Salvation Front, to reverse its decision to boycott parliamentary elections due to begin in April.

For months, Egypt has been locked in political crisis, amid successive waves of protests against Islamist President Mohammed Morsi that have repeatedly turned into deadly clashes and rioting.

The opposition accuses Morsi and the Brotherhood, from which he hails, of dominating power in Egypt, effectively stepping in to the same role as ousted autocrat Hosni Mubarak and failing to carry out reforms while their supporters seek to instill a more religiously conservative system. Morsi’s administration and the Brotherhood, in turn, say their opponents are trying to use street unrest to overturn their election victories.

Washington, Egypt’s longtime economic and military benefactor, has kept relatively warm ties with Morsi. The Obama administration has praised him for helping resolve last year’s battles between Israel and Hamas, the Islamic militant rulers of the Gaza Strip, and for maintaining Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel.

The U.S. has said it wants to encourage the building of democracy in Egypt and, amid the political turmoil, has urged all sides to work out their differences. But the opposition says U.S. officials have voiced little criticism of what it calls the Brotherhood’s undemocratic ways of imposing power, including pushing through an Islamist-backed constitution despite an opposition boycott at the end of its drafting.

At least two opposition figures said they rejected invitations to meet with Kerry when he holds talks with Egyptian political parties Saturday, ahead of the American diplomat’s meetings the next day with Morsi and the head of Egypt’s powerful military. (Aya Batrawy, AP, via The Boston Globe)

 

More : http://bostonglobe.com/news/world/2013/03/01/with-kerry-way-egypt-liberals-angry/AVP4gV7pv0VqIPuZwlKRwI/story.html?utm_medium=referral&utm_source=t.co

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Egypte: des chefs de l'opposition refusent de voir John Kerry

Egypte: des chefs de l'opposition refusent de voir John Kerry | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Par Alexandre Buccianti/RFI


C’est Hamdin Sabbahi, chef de l’aile gauche du Front du salut national qui l’a annoncé : ni lui, ni Mohamed el-Baradei, coordinateur du Front et prix Nobel de la paix ne rencontreront John Kerry.

Selon Sabbahi, les Etats-Unis cherchent à mettre la pression sur l’opposition pour qu’elle revienne sur sa décision de boycotter les élections législatives qui doivent commencer le 22 avril. « Une ingérence dans les affaires intérieures égyptiennes », a écrit le directeur du journal Al-Tahrir.

Morsi a besoin du soutien de Washington

La visite du secrétaire d’Etat américain est par contre fort attendue de la part du président Frère musulman, Mohamed Morsi, qui a besoin du soutien de Washington en cette période où son pouvoir est largement contesté.

Coté américain, on attend du président égyptien qu’il réitère son attachement à la paix avec Israël, principal allié des Etats-Unis dans la région. Le président égyptien avait été salué par Washington pour être rapidement parvenu à réaliser une trêve durable entre les islamistes du Hamas et Israël.

 

http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20130302-egypte-chefs-opposition-refusent-voir-john-kerry-sabbahi-baradei

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Last call for Egypt's activists? | openDemocracy

What Egypt’s revolutionary activists lack is a coherent organisational base. Only the Muslim Brotherhood manages to reach out to the electorate and by doing so easily grabs the levers of power.

Egypt is in turmoil, with almost daily clashes between the authorities and a variety of protesters that according to some threaten the very foundations of the state. (...).

How are outsiders supposed to know what’s going on if one of the most influential street art interpreters of Egypt’s revolution now sighs: “I need some time to think of what to do next. I’m not sure what to do with the situation.”

But one thing is clear: the story is not yet finished and activists are not giving up. The only question is whether they’ll be able to regroup effectively.

The contradictions in Cairo were all too apparent one Friday at the beginning of February. Two girls in headscarves sat at their laptops, intently staring at their screens and deftly moving their fingers over touchpads to produce a series of screeching sounds and thumping rhythms in a dimly lit new experimental music space in downtown Talat Harb Street. (...)

Many of the secular activists who drove the revolution and who laid the foundations for it by exposing the brutality of the Mubarak regime and the police are dejected about the way things have turned out. They place almost equal blame on the Muslim Brothers, whom they accuse of pernicious lies and manipulation, and on the raft of vainglorious opposition leaders who failed to unite and offer a viable alternative.

Egypt-actus's insight:

Some have concluded that violence is the only answer, as it will keep the Muslim Brothers aware of the depth of the resistance against their vision for the country  (...).

How this will play out during the parliamentary elections that are to be held soon is anybody’s guess. But based on past performance, the Muslim Brotherhood is the only organized political entity (...)

 

When it’s so easy to grab almost all the levers of power, it is hard to blame the Brotherhood for doing so. A counterweight is badly needed but violence is a dead end that will only alienate the population and turn it away from politics or drive it further into the arms of the Brotherhood.

The international community can help, not only by imposing conditionality for aid on the Muslim Brotherhood dominated government, as it is doing, but also by imposing conditionality for aid on the opposition and the activists. If they do not unite, organize and reach out to all layers of society, they will become even less relevant than they are already in danger of becoming.

 

More on: http://www.opendemocracy.net/ferry-biedermann/last-call-for-egypts-activists

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On the Egyptian opposition - Blog - The Arabist

On the Egyptian opposition - Blog - The Arabist | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

(...) Anyone who follows Egyptian politics will have probably made two broad conclusions by now. First, that the Muslim Brotherhood and President Mohammed Morsi, out of a combination poor judgement, paranoia and greed, have made the choice of sacrificing the possibility of a stable and inclusive transition for the sake of consolidating their control over the old regime machinery rather than reforming it.

Second, that the “liberal” or secular opposition gathered under the banner of the National Salvation Front (NSF) is missing a golden opportunity to benefit from the Brotherhood’s actions and the public indignation they have caused by behaving in an utterly politically clueless manner. (...)

Whatever bluster the MB is making about having a mandate from the parliamentary and presidential elections (...)  have sent the opposition into spinning hysteria. (...).

The NSF may be right to be angry, and it is not the only political actor to share in that anger (look at the Salafis’ recent blistering critique of the MB as power-hungry and bent on appointing supporters in local administration for electoral advantage) but the anger has not been channelled constructively.

Dissonant voices inside the NSF (...), a growing disconnect with protestors, changing demands and lack of organizational savvy are causing the opposition to appear totally out of touch and incapable of representating a viable alternative. (...)

 

In no particular order, here is what I see as the main problems:

- The NSF is being led by the protest movement rather than leading it. (...)

- The NSF’s demands took over one month to coalesce — and then they allowed themselves to be trapped by their own positions  (...)

- One the main demands, for a National Unity Government (NUG) to be formed, seems of dubious necessity to me. What, precisely, was being envisaged (...)

 

- Likewise, Amr Moussa’s demand that elections be postponed made no sense to me. Postponed to what purpose? There may be decent reasons, but they never made them clear. And who governs in the interim (...)

- The NSF wants the constitution amended, and Morsi agrees in principle. But it has not specified the mechanism by which the constitution should be amended. The MB’s choice, backed by the constitution, is that a committee could be formed to identify articles to change (...)

 

- The NSF criticizes Morsi for not “achieving the revolution’s goals” yet does not put forward proposals to do so itself.(...)

 

- Another issue they could raise is security sector reform, where again there is much agreement but zero implementation (...)

 

- The NSF has not capitalized on the grievances around issues of social justice and governance, have not offered their own take on whether an IMF deal is desirable and if so what kind of austerity measures should be taken to improve Egypt’s fiscal balance (...)

 

I spend much of my time, on this blog and elsewhere, criticizing the Brotherhood’s disastrous handling of politics in the last two months. They deserve full blame for the situation of the country (...). But the NSF’s ineffectual leadership has made this all the more easy, with no clear alternative being proposed to counter the narrative that the “opposition” are just a bunch of spoilers. I don’t believe it’s that simple, but they are unable to counter that idea without putting forward some serious, well-thought-out proposals.(...)

 

On the question of the boycott, I can partly understand the position(...). Having asked for the wrong things initially, and threatened not to participate if it doesn’t get what it wants, the NSF is now stuck with having to carry out its threat or back down. It thus now appears to be betting that the boycott and protests will eventually force the Morsi regime’s hand.

Such a strategy is doubly risky: it opens the NSF to accusations of destabilization and unwillingness to compete (...), and does not give it a backup plan should the current instability recede and elections take place with some participation from the rest of the opposition (Salafi, felool, etc.). (...)

 

 

More on: http://www.arabist.net/blog/2013/2/27/on-the-egyptian-opposition.html

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Egypte : l’opposition se résout à boycotter les législatives

Egypte : l’opposition se résout à boycotter les législatives | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Ils boycotteront les élections législatives censées débuter fin avril.

Le Front du salut national, la principale composante de l’opposition égyptienne qui regroupe des libéraux et des partis de gauche, a décidé de ne pas présenter de candidats.

Parmi les motifs invoqués, l’absence de garanties sur la tranparence du scrutin et sur la formation d’un nouveau gouvernement.

“Je pense que ce n’est pas une bonne chose de boycotter les élections, réagit un citoyen égyptien. Ils sont censés participer, et aller voir les gens sur le terrain. Mais au sein de leur cuisine politique, c’est vraiment la pagaille et ils ont certainement un autre point de vue.”

“Cette décision va laisser le champ libre à certains partis pour dominer la scène politique, analyse le spécialiste de politique égyptienne Magdi Sakhi, et dans le même temps je crains que les partis d’opposition ne se désintéressent du processus politique à l’avenir.”

 

L’opposition n’a pas non plus participé au “dialogue national” impulsé par le président Morsi.(...).

 

Plus: http://fr.euronews.com/2013/02/28/egypte-l-opposition-se-resoud-a-boycotter-les-legislatives/

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Opposition group denounces U.S. intervention in Egypt affairs

Opposition group denounces U.S. intervention in Egypt affairs | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it

Egypt's National Association for change condemned on Wednesday the "outright intervention of the United States in Egypt's internal affairs" which was expressed in the U.S. State Department call to the opposition to participate in the parliamentary elections.

 

Spokesperson of the U.S. State Department, Edgar Vasquez, has urged all the Political Parties to participate in the upcoming elections, saying, "Elections give the Egyptians a chance to have their voices heard."

"It is crucial for all Egyptian parties to be involved," said Vasquez, as reported by the American Network, Fox News.

In response to Vasquez's remarks, the National Association for Change issued a statement saying, "Neither America, nor any other country, has the right to provide advice to Egyptians, or interfere in any way in the internal affairs of Egypt."

"The successive governments of the United States have supported Hosni Mubarak's regime unconditionally, which sponsored corruption and tyranny. They continue to disgracefully support the Muslim Brotherhood's repressive regime," said the statement.

 

The statement added that according to U.S. reports, Barack Obama's administration has provided financial aid of one billion and a half dollars to the Muslim Brotherhood to enable it to take over the revolution and the government.  (...)

 

"Egypt is not a Banana republic, if the U.S. continues its bias towards tyrants at the expense of the right of the Egyptian people to independence (...)

 

More on: http://en.aswatmasriya.com/news/view.aspx?id=892037ac-5ef4-485f-93f1-133452143325

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Transparency fears: Egypt opposition boycotts Brotherhood’s elections

Transparency fears: Egypt opposition boycotts Brotherhood’s elections | Égypt-actus | Scoop.it
Egypt-actus's insight:

Egypt's main opposition coalition, the National Salvation Front, said Tuesday it will boycott upcoming parliamentary elections due to a lack of guarantees of a transparent process.

"The decision of the Front, unanimously, is to boycott the elections," NSF member Sameh Ashour told a news conference in Cairo after a meeting of the alliance grouping mainly liberals and leftists.

Ashour said the decision had come after its demands, including the formation of a new government "to save the country", had been ignored.

"There can be no elections without a law that guarantees the transparency of the electoral process... without a real independence of the judiciary," Ashour said as opposition activists broke out into chants against President Mohamed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood.

Officials in the opposition alliance had been locked in heated debate in recent weeks over whether or not to take part in the staggered elections, members said. (Midle East Online)

 

More : http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=57201

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