To Stop Sisi, Strengthen Egypt’s Judiciary

Why Restoring the Rule of Law is the Best Way Forward

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi attends a military ceremony in Paris, France, November 2014 Charles Platiau / REUTERS

President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s Egypt is a dangerous place for dissidents. Under Sisi’s command, the military and security forces used extraordinary violence to consolidate power in the summer of 2013 that cost at least 817 lives. Security forces detained, charged, or sentenced at least 41,000 people between July 2013 and April 2014, mostly because of their alleged association with the Muslim Brotherhood. The human rights situation deteriorated even further in subsequent years. Egyptian police forcibly disappeared citizens, leaving no legal trail. The parliament passed laws in 2017 and 2018 that empowered the government to closely monitor civil society organizations and media outlets. It shut down those whose activities did not align with its interests. Egypt’s new authoritarianism isn’t simply a continuation of the rule of former President Hosni Mubarak, whose dictatorial tendencies led to his overthrow. It is more repressive and more brutal.   

Rights groups and others have called for Sisi to allow

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