Monday, May 01, 2006

Egyptian Judges Revolution against Oppression and Tyranny

I am proud to be one of the early Egyptians who wrote about the new emerging revolution of the Egyptian judges back in July 2005 and the dire need for supporting them in December 2005 before the judges’ massacre started early this year. And I was right, it has started against the judges and it is taking many Egyptians on the way in mass detentions. Detentions have started last week April and rounded around 52 Egyptians.

August 2005, the honorable judges set their conditions for supervising the elections and their demands were overruled and the elections process was rigged. The demands led to a growing tension between the Judges and the regime. Following the elections’ results, the Egyptian judges were outspoken over the rigged results, something that was not so much appreciated by the Egyptian regime and President Mubarak.

In February 2006, in an apparent escalation with the judges, judges Mahmoud Mekki and Hisham Bastawisi’s immunity was lifted in preparation to refer them to a disciplinary hearing for being outspoken about the right to an independent Judiciary and the irregularities that marred the last legislative elections in November and December 2005.

In March, popular rallying began in the streets of Cairo in support of the Egyptian judges demands for independent judiciary.

In April, the regime takes the chance to clamp down on Egyptians who are showing support to the demands of judges. Around 52 Egyptian protesters in solidarity with the judges were detained during the last week of April. One of them is an activist blogger called Malek.

On April 23, I went to the sit-in site in front of the Judges Club. Some Egyptian Copts joined the judges in their Easter day when they were supposed to be celebrating with families. At dawn, April 24, a security force attacked and detained the peaceful protestors destroying their signs and detained several of them. When Judge Mahmoud Hamza tried to save the protestors he was beaten and dragged in the street. Egyptian riot police stole his gun and cell while beating him.

April 27, on the day of the disciplinary hearing for judges judges Mahmoud Mekki and Hisham Bastawisi, popular rallies gathered in the streets of Cairo's down town. Riot police cordoned the protesters and started beating them with sticks.

After the hearing of two judges who had accused the judiciary of helping to rig elections was adjourned to May 11, their syndicate (Judges Club) held an assembly during which they vowed to keep up the pressure on President Hosni Mubarak.

In a statement released after their meeting, the judges called for "democracy through free elections which allow a real change of regime."

They also called for "the abolition of all exception laws, including the state of emergency, and for the freedom to form political parties without any restrictions."

And here we go the swirl of violence is starting with an adequate procedure. It is battle of survival of the regime. More to come...

Picture by AP: Egyptian riot police crushing protesters.


At 2:49 AM, Anonymous ldw said...

Hey, Freedom, there are two things that bother me about these judges, supposedly the shining light for freedom and independent thought in Egypt:

1. These guys clearly do not give a fig about the fact that, other than one token at the top, there are no women judges in Egypt. They seem to revel in their insularity and privileged status, along with the fact that judging in Egypt ain't no 40-hour-a-week job.

2. They refused to meet with Human Rights Watch, on the grounds that the Government asked them not to. What was that?

At 4:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Great blog. All Egyptians should support the judges in their quest for independance of the judiciary from the government. This is ABC of democracy and it is a shame we had that before 1952.
What the government is doing is absolutely stupid.

For ldw, judges are supposed to be priviledged and insular. That is how it is in democracies. Judges, after passing through many tests and procedures, are given that right. A woman judge was appointed last year in Egypt, though I do hope for more, this question should be asked of the government, since most judges start as being district attorneys.
Egyptian in Germany


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