TEXT: Letter from April 6 to an EU diplomat
I am honored to write to you on behalf of my colleagues in the Egyptian 6th April Youth Movement, with regards to the recent political evolutions in country.
The entire world was shocked with the Egyptian courts sentencing hundreds to death with accusations of supporting the Muslim brotherhood, the former elected ruling party and organization.
These dramatic sentences were accompanied by another rule banning 6th April Youth Movement, the promoter of non-violence in Egypt.
On 10 February 2014, the Foreign Affairs Council Meeting concluded in point 8: "The EU also reiterates its readiness to observe the upcoming elections, if conditions are met, and calls on the Egyptian interim authorities to ensure an environment conducive to inclusive, transparent and credible elections, including a level playing field for the election campaigns. In view of the recent developments, the Council recalls that no political groups should be excluded or banned as long as they renounce violence and respect democratic principles".
In times in which more than twenty thousand prisoners are detained since the military intervention/coup on 3rd July, political movements, Islamist and Secular, are being banned, extreme nationalistic propaganda are widely diffused through the State apparatus, it is quite evident that the "conditions are hardly met". It is certain that Mr. Sisi will win the show, whether in presence or absence of the EU elections observation mission. Suspending the mission, however, would send a clear message to Mr. Sisi as well as to the European and Egyptian public opinions that the EU can hardly accept and even participate in legitimizing the current practices in Egypt.
Please find the following links to Amnesty International human rights reports on Egypt:
· Amnesty International, 28 April 2014: Egypt unfair trial, death sentences make mockery of justice http://www.amnesty.org/en/news/egypt-unfair-trial-death-sentences-make-mockery-justice-2014-04-28
· Amnesty International, 17 April 2014: Egypt: Three Women Jailed On Trumped-Up Charges http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/MDE12/021/2014/en/87718b84-98c4-46a6-9d1b-5ecdcaf4eecb/mde120212014en.html
· Amnesty International, 9 April 2014: Egypt must end ‘vindictive’ detention of Al Jazeera journalists (Mohamed Fahmy, Peter Greste and Baher Mohamed) http://www.amnesty.org/en/for-media/press-releases/egypt-must-end-vindictive-detention-al-jazeera-journalists-2014-04-09
· Amnesty International, 31 March 2014: Egypt’s Security Forces are getting away with murder: Amnesty International Oral Statement to the 25th Session of the UN Human Rights Council http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/MDE12/017/2014/en
· Amnesty International, 28 March 2014: Egypt: 528 men sentenced to death after mass trial http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/MDE12/016/2014/en
We really hope that you could re-assess the decision of dispatching the mission during your next COREPER II meeting on 7th May. We truly fear that more death sentences would come and more repressive measures against 6th April and other secular movements would be put in action. 6th April foudner, Ahmed Maher, is already detained since November 2013. The minimal would be to suspend the mission for "technical reasons".