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Thursday, 13 December 2018

April 6 boycotts Egypt's 'farcical' presidential elections

The banned group extends its respect to Egypt's Nasserist presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabahi and vows to uphold 'the struggle for the revolution'

Zeinab El-Gundy, Wednesday 14 May 2014
April 6 Youth movement
April 6 Youth Movement's Press conference in Cairo (Photo:Zeinab El-Gundy)
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Egypt's April 6 Youth Movement has announced it will boycott the upcoming presidential elections, describing the process as "a farce" during a press conference on Wednesday.

"After nearly five months of discussion and following all that's happened in the political scene, we held an internal vote with our members regarding our final decision and our members voted to boycott these farcical elections," the movement said in a statement read during the press conference.

Now banned by interim authorities, the movement was a vital mobilising force behind the 25 January 2011 revolution which unseated longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

The statement slammed the commanders of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), accusing them of leading a counter-revolution against the 2011 revolution and using "the revolutionary wave of 30 June" to bring military rule back to Egypt – in reference to the 2013 protests that led to the ouster of president Mohamed Morsi, which the movement described as a coup.

"The SCAF generals led the counter-revolution perfectly, whether through arbitrary murders or arbitrary arrests during the period, unleashing in the media those who call the 25 January revolution a defeat and arresting revolutionaries as well suspending revolutionary activities," the statement said.

"Just like the Muslim Brotherhood took advantage of 25 January and used it to rule unwisely, these SCAF generals took advantage of the revolutionary wave of 30 June," the statement continued, adding that the military should not have interfered in politics or fielded "a presidential candidate" in the elections "to protect its interests" – a reference to former army chief Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi, who has received the SCAF's blessing to run for the presidency.

"We remember that the commanders of the armed forces promised that they would not interfere in politics and would return to the barracks after 30 June, but that promise was broken and we found the field marshal [El-Sisi] running for president," the statement said.

Using strong language, the revolutionary youth movement criticised El-Sisi, claiming that the SCAF created his persona through a false sense of popularity and heroism when the former defence minister found himself unable to fully end the spate of terrorist attacks in Egypt that peaked after Morsi's ouster.

"We've got a candidate who does not meet the public or even have a programme, yet all the state's institutions are standing with him," the movement said.

The current coordinator of the April 6 Youth Movement also spoke at the press conference:

"The transitional period is ending correctly by crowning the military institution's candidate as the real ruler of Egypt. We've moved from bad to worse to worst since the start of the year, whether through street clashes, the protest law, the arrest of activists, the 25 January revolution anniversary clashes – and the arbitrary arrests that took place that day – and then the banning of April 6 Youth Movement as a political movement," he said.

"Today we are facing an event that has confirmed all our fears and warnings: military rule is back in a clear, direct way. We warned of its return as early as 1 July 2013," Ali added.

The movement also hinted that it would continue its peaceful struggle against dictatorship and that it has not called on anyone to boycott or participate in elections, leaving the choice up to the public.

Even though the movement will be boycotting the presidential polls, it still extended its respect to the field marshal's only rival, long-time Nasserist politician Hamdeen Sabahi.

Last week, one of the group's offshoots, the April 6 Democratic Front, said it remained undecided on whether or not to boycott the electoral race, adding that it planned to launch "Against You" – a campaign against El-Sisi’s presidential candidacy, which the revolutionary movement accuses of embodying the return of the “repressive regime" of Mubarak.

On 28 April, an Egyptian court banned the April 6 Youth Movement, accusing the group of defaming the country and colluding with foreign parties.

The group has been vocally critical of the interim authorities, which have arrested thousands in a vigorous crackdown that first targeted only Islamists but which has recently jailed dozens of secular activists as well. 

Nine members of April 6 are currently in jail for illegal protesting, including founding member Ahmed Maher and leading figure Mohamed Adel.

Egypt’s second presidential race since Mubarak’s ouster will take place on 26-27 May, with only El-Sisi and Sabahi facing off.

 

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Masry
15-05-2014 05:08pm
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Go Play
Pathetic puppets. They actually think they speak for the revolution. Go Play. It was them who helped the IKHWANY terrorists to power in the first place.They are puppets of the IKHWAN and instead coming to the table and having a voice they decided to protest and follow the terrorist against egyptians
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Aladdin, Egypt
15-05-2014 01:59am
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Nice Picture
Thanks; it better than thousands words.
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neil
14-05-2014 04:54pm
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new interpretation
a minute ago, I would have said that they are 'boycotting' because of sabahi's 2% support while 'representing january 25', ... so avoid linking that 2% with the 'revolution'. however, the adjacent aticle showing a poll with 74% youth for sisi vs 4% for sisi, means that sabahi has not got the revolution vote .... and that 'april 6' can no longer claim to represent any measurable number of youth... better to 'boycott' and claim the vote of youth for their opponent is not against them, while claiming that any youth who don't turnout to vote are their's... fact, they're one-dimensional 'activists', with no suggestion of how to 'build' Egypt
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Faraz
15-05-2014 11:16am
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74 % youth
74% youth of total 2000 surveyed that make less than 1500.So CC having support of less the 1500 youth.Mr Neil just remind you these are same polls that were saying Amr Mosa is the front runner..remember..?? These polls are propagada tools being used against revolutionary force by deep state supporters.If majority of Egyptians love and support CC then why he's hiding in a hole..? why he can fact the publice and media..? Why you don't allow people to speak up..? why you are cracking down dissidents.? why you killing people by bullets & judiciary...? Popular leaders never afraid of their own people they never afraid of being killed...Why we can't see that 33 million people of 30th June on streets now...? CC support prevails only in media ,police, and judiciary.
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Aladdin, Egypt
14-05-2014 04:51pm
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GOOD
You represent terrorist group Brotherhood of Kazabeens and you took money to betray your country.
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Hazem L
15-05-2014 02:51pm
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Miiltary terorrists, not April 6, are foreign sponsored criminals
Those who ally with the war criminal Sisi represent Saudi Wahabaism, a betrayal of Egypt, and foreign funding. An article on this website has proven April 6 received no forieign money while the military and Sisi have, as have Mubarak. The Wahabi Sisi reflects a foerign agenda; April 6 does not. The military is an ally of Wahabis; April 6 is not.
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