Egypt tensions running high over new anti-protest law


Tensions are still running high in Egypt as Cairo sentences 21 girls to 11 years in jail each, while arresting 17 mosque imams in Gharbeyah over what they call incitement against the military.

The misdemeanors court in Alexandria handed down 11-year sentences to 21 female demonstrators for their role in anti-government protests, al-Shorouk reported on Wednesday.

Seven of the demonstrators, who were minors, were sentenced to a juvenile home, while the others were sent to jail, the report said.

This is while according to pro-Muslim Brotherhood news outlets, dozens of students were arrested after Egyptian police stormed the University of al-Fayoum in the city of the same name.

Police stormed the university campus firing tear gas before detaining the students who were planning anti-coup protests.

In other news, Egypt’s prosecutor general ordered a four-day detention for 24 activists arrested during protests against a new law criminalizing demonstrations without a permit.

Cairo also issued arrest warrants for two well-known activists wanted for inciting demonstrators to organize the protest.

Authorities are seeking to detain Ahmad Maher, the founder of the April 6 movement against former dictator Hosni Mubarak that led to 2011 revolution in the country, and Alaa Abdel Fattah, a prominent activist.

On Tuesday, security forces used water cannons to disperse demonstrators protesting outside the upper house of the parliament in Cairo.

The demonstrators denounced a proposed constitutional amendment allowing military courts to try civilians.

Egypt enacted a controversial new protest law on November 24, under which the gatherings of more than 10 people require a written permit three days prior to the protest.

Cairo’s crackdown on protesters has drawn criticism from UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay as well as the leading human rights group, Amnesty International.


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