US report on religious freedom criticizes Egypt

AlBawaba News
Date of source:
15 Oct 2015

For the fifth year in a row, the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) recommended in its 2015 report that Egypt be designated a “country of particular concern,” or CPC, under the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA). President al-Sisi encouraged religious tolerance but nevertheless religious minorities, in particular Copts, are not adequately protected from from periodic violence. The report "added that the government’s efforts to combat extremism and terrorism have had a chilling impact on civil society activities in the country. Among the consequences have been severe limits on dissent and criticism of the government, resulting in a poor human rights situation overall, including for freedom of religion or belief." and "Sympathizers and members of the Muslim Brotherhood, journalists, and opposition figures continue to be harassed, jailed, and given harsh prison terms, including death sentences for Brotherhood members and other Islamists, sometimes on legitimate, but also on unfounded, security charges," said the report.

Cornelis Hulsman: Periodic violence against Coptic Christians is to a large extent related to sentiments in society in which Islamists do play a role. Egypt does face a war between government and its Islamist opposition in which in particular the Muslim Brotherhood plays a role. That context needs to be mentioned. Also compare this critique with the positive points listed in the report. See:

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