Wednesday, May 17, 2006

EU calls Egypt's police operation "disproportionate" and questions arrests

The European Union called the police operation "disproportionate" and questioned arrests made under emergency laws that allow detentions without warrants and imprisoning people for months without charge.

"The European Union calls on the Egyptian government to allow civil society activists and other political forces to express themselves freely, to permit peaceful demonstrations and freedom of assembly and to maintain public order by transparent and proportionate legal procedure," said a statement from officials in Austria, which currently holds the EU's rotating presidency.

The 25-nation EU said it hoped Egypt would not extend the emergency laws beyond 2008, noting that President Hosni Mubarak had promised to repeal the measures and ensure they were used only to combat terrorism, not target political opponents. Egypt renewed the emergency laws last month. More


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