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Egypt says criticism by UN human rights commissioner is 'politicised, unfounded'

Ahram Online , Tuesday 12 Sep 2017
Amr Ramadan
Egypt’s permanent UN representative Amr Ramadan (Photo: Al-Ahram)
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Egypt said on Tuesday that comments made about Egypt by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights were “politicised” and “irrational,” state news agency MENA reported.

Egypt’s permanent UN representative Amr Ramadan stated that Commissioner Zeid Raad Al-Hussein disregards the sovereignty of states by comparing countries and terrorist groups.

During his speech on Sunday for the UN Human Rights’ 36th session, Al-Hussein, referring to a number of different countries, said that while terrorism cannot “totally obliterate our world,” governments will “break humanity” by choosing authoritarianism over democracy.

On Egypt specifically, Al-Hussein said his office has “received reports of oppressive measures including increasing waves of arrests, arbitrary detention, blacklisting, travel bans, asset freezes, intimidation and other reprisals against human rights defenders, journalists, political dissidents and anyone affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood group.”

In response, Ramadan said in his statement that “the commissioner has previously been warned against allowing his office to be turned into a mouthpiece for organisations driven by political and financial motives.”

Ramadan said the commissioner’s comments on Egypt are unfounded and have no basis in fact, and that Egypt calls on civil society to be a partner in development and progress.

Ramadan also said that fair trials are guaranteed by law in Egypt for everyone, and that firm legal and disciplinary measures are imposed on anyone found to engage in torture.

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