Thursday, February 24, 2011

Egypt: Are Egypt's Military Rulers Flirting With Islamists?

SOURCE Coptic Solidarity

On February 15, 2011, Egypt's Military Council, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, formed a panel charged with drafting modifications to Egypt's current (albeit suspended) constitution. In forming this new panel, the Council dissolved another one that was formed in the last days of Mr. Mubarak's rule, which included ten renowned, and 'apolitical,' judges, academics and public personalities. Instead of relying on those experts, the Council created a new, smaller panel that includes two Islamists. Not only is neither an expert person on constitutional issues, but one is a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood and the other is a theorizer of extremist views, especially regarding the position of non-Muslims in the Islamist state he proclaims.

By excluding from the panel political representatives from all other parts of the political spectrum–even those behind or participating in the 'January 25 Revolution'–the military appears to be sending an unambiguous message regarding its bias (for whatever reasons) towards the Islamists.

We at Coptic Solidarity were deeply concerned by the military's earlier rejection of creating a civilian council to share the responsibility of running the country during a transitional period. We are also extremely disturbed and disappointed by the current Council's intentions regarding the whole concept of a 'civil state' in Egypt—one of the demands of the Revolutionaries—and whether it indeed concocts a military-Islamist coalition to govern Egypt.

We at Coptic Solidarity call upon the military Council to perform its duties in a fair and non divisive manner, leading the country towards a truly democratic system, based on liberty, equality and secular principles.

We also call upon all political leaders and human rights organizations worldwide who have admired or supported the popular revolution that toppled Mubarak's despotic regime, to continue their support of the Egyptian people against all attempts that would make them prey to any kind of fascism.