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Thursday, 22 August 2019

Egypt's 'Creativity Front' blasts criteria for revamped Constituent Assembly

Writers, intellectuals voice disdain for new criteria for selecting members of body tasked with drafting Egypt's post-revolution national charter

Mohamed Saad, Sunday 10 Jun 2012
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The Front for Creativity, a loose grouping of Egyptian artists and intellectuals, has criticised new criteria established for the formation of Egypt's Constituent Assembly – tasked with drafting a new constitution – describing the new criteria as "old wine in new bottles."

In a statement issued following a two-hour meeting on Saturday between the heads of art syndicates and filmmaker Khaled Youssef, the front declared its rejection of the revamped Constituent Assembly. 

The front went on to criticise the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) and the Salafist Nour Party for their perceived monopolisation of the assembly, lamenting the lack of representation in the assembly by writers and intellectuals.  

New criteria for selecting members of the controversial Constituent Assembly were announced last Wednesday. 

According to the new regulations, 39 of the assembly's 100 seats will be earmarked for political parties, of which the FJP would hold 16; the Nour Party eight; the liberal Wafd Party five; the Free Egyptians party two; the Egyptian Social Democratic Party two; and one each for the moderate-Islamist Wasat Party, the Nasserist Karama Party, the Socialist Popular Alliance Party, the liberal Reform and Development Party and the Islamist Building and Development Party.

It was also agreed that the assembly would include 15 judges, nine religious figures (five from Al-Azhar and four from Christian churches), ten public figures, ten revolutionary youth figures (including both men and women), seven members of workers' and farmers' unions, seven members of professional syndicates, and one representative each from the police, army and justice ministry.

Following lengthy negotiations, it was finally decided last week that the assembly would include a 50-50 ratio of Islamist to non-Islamist members.

 

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